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Beyond Togetherness
by Tarena Scott

Disclaimer: Xena, Gabrielle and all other characters who have appeared in the syndicated series Xena:Warrior Princess, together with the names, titles and backstory are the sole copyright property of MCA/Universal and Renaissance Pictures. No Copyright infringement was intended in the writing of this fan fiction. All other characters, the story idea and the story itself are the sole property of the author. This story cannot be sold or used for profit in any way. Copies of this story maybe made for private use only and must include all disclaimers and copyright notices. NOTE: All works remain the copyright of the original author. These may not be republished without the author's consent.

ACT 1 Scene 1
Morning, along a riverbank near Ur, Sumeria. Xena is sitting, resting quietly against a tree. Gabrielle is standing just in front of Xena, pale with her hands covering her mouth. A dish of food is spilled on the ground at her feet. Joxer has dropped his fishing pole and has raced to Gabby's side.
Joxer:Gabby! What's wrong!--- Say something! Are you hurt?
Xena:She doesn't hear you Joxer.
Joxer:Doesn't hear me!? What's wrong with her Xena?
Xena:Looks like shock to me.
Joxer:What could have scared her speechless?
Xena:Not scared Joxer. Stunned speechless is more like it.
Joxer:I didn't think that was possible!---- The gods must be at work here!
Xena:No----just the three of us---or should I say the four of us.
Xena:I'm going to have a child.
Joxer:----Really?! ---but how---er---who? Wait--sorry I shouldn't ask that.-- It's none of my business.
Xena:That's what you think.
Joxer:I'm confused.
Xena:Now there's news.----Before I explain the facts of life to you I think you'd better try to bring Gabrielle around. Here (she hands Joxer a large cup of water). Now throw it on her. (Joxer throws the entire contents of the cup into Gabrielle's face---She is startled out of her trance, and immediately punches Joxer squarely in the nose-- knocking him down)
Joxer:OW! --- Why did you hit me Gabby? I was only trying to help!
Gab:That's not for getting me wet.---That's for getting Xena pregnant!
Gab:You men only have one thing on your minds-- and we women have to pay the price you creep!
Xena:Gabrielle! You're being unfair to Joxer--
Gab:Unfair! Unfair! How can you say that after what he did?
Joxer:WHAT did I do?? I don't remember ever --er--doing anything to Xena.
Xena:He's right Gabrielle. He doesn't remember, you don't remember, and thank the gods I don't remember either.
Gab:The drugged nutbread that old woman gave you and Joxer!!!
Xena:Exactly! It suppressed our conscious thoughts and erased our memories. Then we only did things we secretly desired.
Gab:You secretly wanted to sleep with Joxer? I think I'm going to be sick. --How could you?
Xena:No!----It's true I was with Joxer's body, but who was really there?
Gab:(sheepishly) Oops!
Joxer:Would somebody please tell me what's going on.
Xena:Joxer---you are the father,-----but that only half the story.
Joxer:I still don't get it.
Gab:It's not important Joxer. ---(under her breath). Gee back in Potedaia when they asked " What do want to be when you grow up little girl?" I don't think I ever said " a Dad".
Gab:Nothing---just forget it.

ACT 1 Scene 2
Night. Encamped in the desert. The threesome are sitting around a small fire.
Gab:How are you doing Xena?
Xena:I feel pretty good. You got any dried snake meat in the saddlebags? Of maybe some pickled figs? I really could go for a mess of pickled figs.
Joxer:Yech! Who ever eats stuff like that?
Gab:You've obviously never been pregnant.----Don't give up hope-- the way things are going I think anything might be possible.
Joxer:What do you mean Gabby?
Gab:You still don't get it do you? Maybe I should write it down for you.--- Hey! that's not a bad idea! An epic Scroll! " The Legend of Gabrielle the Unique!" Just think---Famous Bard sacrifices herself gods and true friends. She temporarily uses the body of a---er--great warrior. She--I mean he---they create a new life. She then recovers her original body. Eventually their daughter is borne. She is destined to change the world.
Joxer:A baby girl? How do you know it's going to be girl?
Gab:I'm writing the story so it's a girl.---I hope you don't have a problem with that.
Xena:I do.
Gab:I don't believe I'm what I'm hearing. And from you of all people.
Xena:No-No. I girl is fine. It's your story.
Gab:What about it? Did I leave something out?
Xena:No, but it can never be told.
Xena:What do you think if all our enemies--Gods and mortals alike-- found out about the child? --You and I and even Joxer have chosen our path. We are willing to pay the price. The child must be given a chance to grow until she--or he-- can choose their own road. So this must remain a secret.
Gab:You're right Xena. Even if we all die our child must live!
Joxer:One for all and all for one!
Gab:Catchy Joxer. Did you think of that yourself?
Joxer:Well, I may have read it somewhere.
Xena:I do know one thing. When we reach the next town I've got to get something a little looser to wear, otherwise our secret will become common knowledge.
Gab:Good. Then I can dump this chainmail for something a little less rusty.

ACT 2 Scene 1
A large town in Asia Minor. The threesome have just left a shop. Xena is now wearing a dark green caftan without a belt. Gabrielle has a two piece outfit nearly identical to her original "sports bra" look. Joxer looks exactly as he did before.
Gab:That's much better!
Xena:Why did you buy that outfit? It's just like the one you used to have.
Gab:Well, it was about the only thing they had in my size.---When we reach a city then we can really start building our wardrobe.
Gab:So we can actually change clothes once in awhile.
Xena:You mean we'd have to make up our minds which outfit to wear each day?
Gab:Yes! --And we would have to make sure our boots matched the clothes. And we'd need to have our hair and makeup right to accent what we wore.
Joxer:Gee Gabby,--that sounds awfully complicated.
Xena:Joxer's right---and you'd spend hours before you even could go out. Then what would you do with half the day wasted?
Gab:I guess you could go shopping for more clothes.
Xena:What? Why?
Gab:You'd want to make sure you had the latest styles.
Xena:If I didn't know better I'd think you were Hope--not Gabrielle. That's the most evilly twisted concept I ever heard! Women would never go for such a ridiculous idea!
Gab:Yeah, it is pretty farfetched. Sounds like something Salmoneus would dream up.
Joxer:Would we change our underwear everyday too?
Gab:Joxer--we're talking about ladies. Of course we'd-------Excuse me a minute I just remembered I need to buy something else.
Xena:Forgot underwear again?
Gab:Ha-ha! Quit joking.-- She's some kidder isn't she Joxer?
Xena:Oh, just go and buy the "items" you forgot.---Joxer and I will be looking for the pickled fig merchant.

ACT 2 Scene 2
Another campfire scene . Everyone is sitting by the fire. Xena is just finishing a large dish of pickled figs. Gabby and Joxer are just staring at their plates, which haven't been touched.
Gab:No, I'm ---er---trying to slim down a little.
Joxer:Yeah----me too. A warrior has to stay light on his feet.
Xena:Can I have em?
Gab:Sure---here--go nuts.
Joxer:Here's mine----enjoy.
Gab:Joxer, I can't believe the only food you two bought was pickled figs. What were you thinking of?
Joxer:I thought you were in charge of all shopping.
Gab:I figured you could at least get FOOD! Besides I was busy.
Joxer:How come it took you half a day just to buy underwear?
Gab:Hey! My underwear is my business!
Xena:(Mmmm) It better be purple this time.
Gab:(Blushing) Xena! We'll talk about that later---OK!!
Xena:Yeah, yeah---whatever.
Gab:We should really be discussing THE PLAN shouldn't we?
Gab:You know---what are we going to do when we finally get back to Greece.
Xena:(burp) I have been thinking about it Gabrielle. It's going to take us longer that normal to get home because I'm slowing us down. Sorry about that , but I just can't ride the camel for very long.
Gab:That's OK. Joxer and I are in no hurry.
Xena:Thanks, I knew you'd understand.----Eventually we will get back, but I'll probably be really starting to show by then.
Gab:So where do we go?
Xena:I think the best idea would hide in the mountains. There are old shepherd dwellings we could stay at and not many people live in those regions.
Gab:You can't be thinking of having the baby there! What if something should go wrong? We'd never be able to find help.
Xena:You're right Gabrielle. So I plan on traveling to the Amazon village just before it's time. I'm sure we would be welcome there.
Joxer:Why not go to the Amazons in the first place?
Xena:If we do that there'll be much more opportunity for the secret to get out. That would put both the baby and the Amazons in unnecessary danger.----Joxer, are there any more figs in the saddlebags?
Gab:Xena, I think if you ever want to get into your leather again it might be a good idea to lay off the figs for awhile.

ACT 3 Scene 1
Many weeks later in Greece. Daytime. A lonely track. The threesome are slowly walking. They now have Argo instead of the camels.
Xena:Hold on guys. --I'll be right back . (goes into the bushes)
Joxer:Again! Even when I spend a night at the tavern I don't go that much.
Gab:Will you please stop complaining.---You men just don't have a clue do you?
Joxer:I don't know wh----
Gab:Joxer, be quiet.----There's somebody sneaking toward us in those trees ahead.

(Joxer draws his sword, Gabby readies her staff----suddenly four heavily armed and dangerous men approach them slowly. They appear to be led by a large one-eyed man.)
Joxer:Stop right there unless you wish to face the Master of Mayhem!
Man:(laughing) Just give us your valuables and your woman and we won't harm you.
Xena:(emerging from the bushes behind Gabby and Joxer) Hello Ixos. Still alive and still ugly I see.
Gab:You know this person ? Right, silly me. You always know these types.
Xena:Last time I tangled with Ixos he started the fight with two eyes.
(touching his eyepatch)
---REVENGE! When I'm done with you Xena you won't even have one eye!

(The band of cutthroats draw their weapons and with blood-curdling cries rush toward our heroes)
Gab:It's lights out for you creeps! ( she goes to make a long swing with her staff, but gets it tangled up in her feet and manages to knock herself out.)
Joxer:GABBY! I'll save you! ( Joxer leaps forward and with a dazzling display of fighting skill takes out three of the robbers. Ixos is about to stab Joxer from behind )
Xena:(reaching inside her caftan, pulls out her Chakram) Hey Cyclops face!----nighty night! (with just a flip of the wrist she sends her weapon straight to the side of Ixos head, dropping him at once)
Joxer:Thanks Xena!-- I was about to get him with one of my secret moves.
Xena:Sure Joxer.
Joxer:Gabby! Are you OK? Speak to me.
Gab:Oh no, not again! Don't tell me I knocked myself out this time too.
Xena:OK I won't tell you. And I won't tell you how terrific Joxer was.
Gab:Joxer kicked butt again?
Gab:Xena, what's going on? I never was uncoordinated before.
Xena:Yeah, and Joxer was never a skilled fighter either.
Xena:I have a feeling that when you two shared body and soul something got mixed up.
Gab:You mean I'm going to be a klutz for the rest of my life?
Xena:Well with a few years training we may be able to get you so you don't hurt yourself. I guess you'll just hold Argo while Joxer and I take care of the fighting.
Gab:I think I'm going to cry.
Xena:No, no. Don't do that.---I was teasing a little. I really believe this is temporary condition that won't last long.
Gab:I hope you are right.----Hey those three robbers are getting away!
Xena:Relax. Ixos isn't going anyplace. I don't think those others knew who I am.
Gab:They may have heard Ixos say your name.
Xena:Maybe, but I don't think they'll talk about it.
Gab:Why not?
Xena:Would you let anybody know you were beaten by a unconscious girl, a pregnant woman and Joxer?
Gab:I guess not.

ACT 3 Scene 2
Some months later. A remote shepherd's hut high in the hills. Inside.
Xena:(under her breath) Damn!
Joxer:Something wrong Xena?
Xena:Just my back again-- and the fact I feel like an Egyptian Hippo.
Gab:I warned you about those figs.
Xena:Yeah, yeah----nag nag.
Gab:I am not a nag! I'm just persistent.
Xena:OK-OK. Let's not argue again.
Gab:Sorry,-- you're right. I should be doing stuff to make you feel better. Something to cheer you up.
Xena:Like what?
Joxer:How 'bout a game?
Gab:I have something kinda like a game, but much more important.
Gab:You're pretty far along. We'll be heading for the Amazon village soon, and we haven't picked out any baby names yet.
Joxer:I've got a couple of names I like.
Xena:OK, I'm afraid to ask, but what are they?
Joxer:Joxer Jr., and if it's a girl--Joxenoria.
Gab:Joxenoria? It's sounds like a skin disease. No daughter of mine--I mean ours is going to be named Joxenoria!
Joxer:Let's see you do better!
Gab:Of course I can do better! If it's a boy--Gabriel . A girl ---Gabriella.
Joxer:Very original.
Xena:Guys, I know you mean well, but I think the its the Mother's privilege to pick the name.
Gab:I suppose.-- As usual the father doesn't get a say.
Xena:If it's a boy he'll be called Marcus, and if the baby is a girl then she'll be Melindea.
Gab:Marcus I understand, but why Melindea?
Xena:It's an old family name. My Grandmother was named Melindea. I always thought she was a little disappointed I wasn't named after her. Just before she died I promised to name my first daughter Melindea.
Gab:Then if we have a daughter I'd be proud to call her Melindea.---Don't you agree Joxer?
Joxer:I guess, but I still think it's going to be a boy. I don't see what's wrong with Joxer Jr.
Xena:Sorry Joxer, but my mind is made up.
Joxer:OK, if it's good enough for you two, then it's good enough for me. --Now would you guys like to hear the new song I've been working on?
Xena:Another one? It's not dirty is it?
Joxer:Of course not!
Xena:To bad.
(singing to the Joxer the Mighty tune)
Joxer the Father He won't bother To go back to fighting wars cause he'll be helping doing chores As he stays around the house With his beautiful new spouse He's so glad He's Joxer--Joxer the Dad.
Gab:Spouse? What spouse?
Joxer:Gee, Gabby I thought after all we've been through together--we'd --get married. We could take care of the baby when Xena was away.
Gab:Joxer, I wish I could say yes, but I'm not ready for that kind of commitment.
Joxer:Oh, I ---
Gab:I don't want to hurt you, but I'm not going to lie either.
Joxer:Ah,---I--- (he turns away to mask the tears--he then leaves the hut)
Xena:You know he'd die for you Gabrielle.
Gab:I know that.----why does life have to be so complicated?
Xena:All things come with a price. To savor the joys of living we often have to pay in sorrow.

ACT 4 Scene 1
On the road to the Amazon village.
Xena:Gabrielle, we're going to have to find somewhere closer. It's happening faster than I thought it would.
Gab:Oh no!-- Joxer! Are there any towns or villages near here?
Joxer:I think there's a small village a league north of here and the city of Pappasonika is maybe ten leagues beyond that.
Gab:We've got to get Xena to that village. The baby's on the way.--- You take Argo and ride ahead. See if you can find shelter, and a midwife. Try to hire a wagon and come back as fast as you can!
Joxer:OK (leaves)
Gab:Come on Xena, we've got to keep heading to the village as long as you can.
Xena:I know.

(a shower of lights begin to dance in front of them-- then Ares, god of war appears)
Ares:Glad to see you too.----Hello Xena,-- is this a new look for you? --You know if you really wanted a baby I would have been happy to help out.
Xena:In your dreams! What do you want?
Ares:The child.
Ares:Relax. I'm talking eventually. Someday she'll be at my side. Like her mother should have been.
Gab:She? I TOLD you so Xena!
Ares:Did I spoil your surprise? ---Good! It's only fair after all the things you've ruined for me.
Xena:Poor baby.
Gab:Just go away and leave her along you bastard!
Ares:Language. Annoying AND foul mouthed--tsk,tsk.
Xena:Just get to the point----you do have a point don't you?
Gab:I think it's on top of his head.
Ares:Don't provoke me--
Gab:Or what? I been dead before.
Ares:Xena, if the wasn't just a social call you'd be looking for a new sidekick.
Ares:I just wanted to stop by and thank you for killing Ixos. He wasn't a very reliable follower. Behind on his offerings, and didn't obey orders.
Ares:Yes---he was only supposed to shadow you. Not attack the mother of my future Queen. I would have destroyed him myself if you hadn't saved me the trouble.
Xena:Anytime. When it's comes to anybody who worships you I follow my golden rule.
Ares:Now that's girl I used to love.
Xena:Enough chitchat. I've got something to do.
Ares:Of course, I wouldn't want to keep you from pain and suffering. (He begins to disappear)

(Ares evil laughter fades away )
Gab:Oh Xena, what are we going to do? She won't be safe now.
Xena:I don't know, but if I don't get to that village pretty fast you'll be delivering the baby in the road.

ACT 4 Scene 2
At the home of the local midwife, Rena. Xena is resting on a bed, while Gabby wipes Xena's forehead. Joxer is on the other side of the room pacing back and forth.
Rena:Hey you with the funny armor. Make yourself useful and keep plenty of water boiling on the fire.
Rena:Well my dear, it's only going be a few minutes now. Just keep doing what I told you and soon you'll be holding a beautiful baby.---Go ahead and scream if you want. It won't bother me.
Gab:I don't think that'll be happening, but you'd better watch out for her left hook.
Xena:(clinches her teeth). Another contraction--strong--
Rena:Hold her tight---push honey----it's coming--push!
Xena:(Groaning) Damn you Gabrielle! What have you done to me!
Rena:Huh?? She must be delirious. Women usually curse there husbands.
Gab:(sheepishly) Yeah, she's probably out of her head.
Rena:Hey pal where's that water? I need it now!
Gab:Hurry Joxer!
Joxer:Here---Oh my!
Rena:Steady big boy. Don't pass out yet. We need you.
Gab:One more push Xena!
Rena:Here it comes! -- Got it. (Rena quickly performs the age old duties of a midwife--then the crying of a new life fills the room.) You've got a good , healthy, lovely baby girl. (She gently hands the child to Xena).
Xena:Hello my beautiful Melindea. Welcome to the world.
Gab:(crying) Oh Joxer-- isn't wonderful?
Rena:I'm afraid he's taking a quick nap on the floor. What a tough bunch men are.
Xena:Looks like the old Joxer is starting to return.
Gab:She's so gorgeous Xena.-- I think she's got your eyes. (the baby begins crying louder)
Xena:And your lungs.
Rena:(to Gab) Help me clean up. They both have had a big day and need rest. Besides I can't move your friend from the middle of the floor by myself.

ACT 5 Scene 1
A few weeks later. A campsite near the village. Xena has just finished feeding the baby. Close by Gabby and Joxer are breaking camp.
Gab:Come on Joxer. We all agreed we'd share duties raising Melindea.
Joxer:Yeah, but I thought we were going takes turns doing different stuff.
Gab:I suppose that would be the fair way, but not very practical.
Gab:Yes. Xena takes care of feeding Melindea obviously.
Joxer:Well naturally--
Gab:And I tell her stories and do the lullaby thing.
Joxer:I can sing!
Gab:38 versions of " Joxer the Mighty" hardly qualifies you as a singer.
Joxer:I still don't think it's fair that I always have to change the diapers.
Xena:Hey Joxer! Come here! Melindea's got something for you.
Joxer:(Groan)-----Come on baby-- let's go get you cleaned up-----AGAIN.
Xena:Bye-bye Melindea. Mommy will see you soon.

(Joxer and the baby leave to go to a stream)
Gab:Well Xena, have you got any ideas what we can do?
(finishes putting on her breastplate)
-- Now that Ares knows about the baby there is probably only option.
Gab:I can't believe you got your shape back so quickly you rotten woman. Sorry! Ignore that. I'm just being jealous.----OK. What option?
Xena:I'm afraid we must leave Greece forever. Perhaps we can head North until we reach the domain of some other gods.
Gab:Leave everyone we know behind? We have so much more work to do here. So many people who need our help.
Xena:I know. You can stay behind if you think it's necessary, but I have to protect my child.
Gab:You're right of course. I don't know what I should-----
Joxer:(running back) Xena! Gabrielle! Mounted soldiers! Coming this way fast!
Xena:(drawing her sword) Gabrielle---Joxer! Stay back and protect the baby!

(A group of 10 well armed soldiers rides up. About 20 feet from Xena they come to a stop. Their leader raises his hand in a sign of peace)
Leader:Sheath you weapons. We mean you no harm. ---We've come to protect you Xena.
Xena:Just stay where you are.------- Don't I know you?
Leader:Yes, we've met before----in a way I helped protect you then too.
Xena:Gareth the Thespian!
Gar:actually it was Gareth the Thespian and Musician. Now it's just Gareth, Prince Consort of Queen Rachel of Pappasonika.---you can call me Gareth.-- I've certainly never been one to use titles.
Gab:(returning to Xena's side). You're a Prince? When did that happen?
Gar:I'll tell you all about on the way back to the city. That and something much more important. I promise you everything will be fine.
Gab:Xena, should we trust him?
Xena:Yes Gabrielle, I think we can---but stay alert.---OK Gareth-- we agree.
Gar:Wonderful! You and Gabrielle can ride up with me so I can explain why I've come. Your man servant can follow with the baby in the wagon we brought. It should be here in a few moments.
Xena:He's no servant. That's Joxer the--er--baby's father.
Gar:He's the father? ---Oh I see! He's disguised as some kind of bumbling idiot to hide his true identity. Very effective, sure fooled me.

ACT 5 Scene 2
Riding to the city. Xena, Gabrielle and Gareth are together at the front of the column.
Gar:So I was traveling with a small troupe of performers and we stopped at Pappasonika. The Queen took a liking to my music. One thing led to another and here I am.
Xena:I've heard love is blind. Guess it's true.
Gab:Good thing you never sold Queen Rachel one of those costumes you sold us. Even love wouldn't saved you.
Gar:You sound bitter Gabrielle. Those costumes must have made excellent disguises. After all you both appear to be alive, so I assume they worked.
Gab:Yes they worked OK. Trouble is I never got rid of the fleas they gave me until I used a bath of molten lava.
Gar:Huh? I don't understand.
Xena:It's not important Gareth. Let's get to the reason you're here and how you knew all about us.--I promise if you are in league with Ares it'll be the last alliance you ever make.
Gar:Ares? Certainly now. In fact almost the opposite.
Xena:Then you have nothing to worry about. Any enemy of Ares is a friend of mine. Go on with you story.
Gar:First I should give you a little history on Pappasonika. About 125 years ago it was founded by a splinter group of Amazons. Those women felt it was wrong to exclude men from their daily lives. Now our city is a model community where men and women participate on equal terms.
Gab:Very interesting.
Gar:The only exception is that the ruler must be a Queen, both as a tribute to the Amazon past and to please our patron Goddess--Artemis. She is the only deity worshipped there, and in return she takes an active interest in our well being.
Xena:So this is about Artemis then?
Gar:Exactly Xena. It was through her Oracle we were instructed to find you, protect you and the child, and make you an offer of divine protection.
Gab:Artemis must be trying to thwart Ares. So are we to become pawns in another Olympian struggle?
Xena:Let's hear him out. We have to worry about Melindea's safety above all else. Maybe this is a way to keep her from Ares' clutches.
Gar:That's exactly what it is and it's also necessary for the salvation of Pappasonika.---The Oracle said that Artemis wished us to protect Melindea and raise her when you couldn't be there. She would receive the finest education in all aspects of life.--- So that she would be prepared for her destiny.
Gar:Yes, someday she will be Queen of Pappasonika!
Gab:Wait a minute! Melindea is to become heir to the throne? What about your children?
Gar:We don't have any.
Gab:Oh, I'm sorry. I didn't mean---
Gar:That's OK Gabrielle. We don't have any yet, but the Oracle says we will have several. They will all be sons.
Xena:Ah! So no heir to the throne. That usually means civil war and the eventual collapse of a kingdom.
Gar:Yes. That's the Queen's greatest fear.
Xena:I don't know if I can give Melindea up. I made that kind of mistake before and I'll regret it for the rest of my life.
Gar:You won't be giving her up. She will remain your daughter. You can she her as much as you wish. You'll have complete control over her education, and if you ever wish to take her away you may. The only condition is that when the time comes for her to ascend the throne you allow her the freedom to make her own choice in the matter.
Xena:Sounds almost to good to be true. Gareth before I let you know, I have to discuss your proposal with Gabrielle and Joxer. It'll have to be their decision too.
Gar:Certainly. Why don't you two go back to Joxer and the baby and talk it over. We'll be arriving at the city in about an hour.

(Xena and Gabrielle ride back to the wagon with Joxer and Melindea. After several minutes of animated discussion)
Xena:So we all agree on this?

ACT 5 Scene 3
The throne room of Queen Rachel. She is seated on a splendid throne of gold and ivory. Just behind her is a large statue of Artemis. The large room is filled to overflowing with a mixture of statesmen, advisors, priests, soldiers and the common citizens of Pappasonika. Trumpets announce the arrival of the party. Gareth enters. Following is Xena with Melindea, she is flanked by Gabrielle and Joxer. They approach the Queen. Gareth bows slightly.
Gar:O Hail my Queen! Here by your command is Xena, the Warrior Princess with her daughter Melindea. Her companions Gabrielle, once and future Queen of the Amazons and Joxer the---
Joxer:Mighty!--Maste--er--Prince of Mayhem your Majesty.
Queen:Ah! The father of Melindea. Xena I see you and I have something in common.
Xena:What's that your Ma--
Rachel:Just Rachel. I only use the trappings of the monarchy when I have to.
Xena:Good. -- You were saying Rachel?
Rachel:We both appear to have odd tastes in men.
Xena:You don't know the half of it.
Rachel:Have you reached a decision?
Xena:Yes. My heart tells me I should keep Melindea with me.
Xena:But it also tells me that I must do what is best for her. So I --all three of us--agree to allow you to care for her.
Rachel:I know how hard this must be for you. I promise on my life and the lives of all Pappasonikans that we will love and protect her. I swear by Artemis!--- Please give me the baby.

(Xena hands Melindea to the Queen. The Queen stand up and gently raises the child for all to see)
Rachel:I, Queen Rachel of Pappasonika, Servant of Artemis present to you my people the daughter of Xena and your future Queen. All hail Princess Melindea of Pappasonika. May she and her descendants rule wisely and serve the noble Goddess until the end of time!

(The crowd breaks into wild cheering. Xena, Gabrielle, and Joxer stand aside, looking very solemn. As the celebration swirls around them no one notices the tears that have begun to flow down the trio's cheeks)


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