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Xena: Warrior Princess, Gabrielle, Argo 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 may be made for private use only and must include all disclaimers and copyright notices.

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This is the full-text version of the poem Gabrielle began to recite to Xena at the end of the episode Intimate Stranger. It is written in the style of a petition to the gods to argue for Perdicas' status as a hero, thereby ensuring him a position in the Elysian Fields, the hero's paradise.

I Sing a Song of Perdicas: A Petition

From the scrolls of Gabrielle, Bard of Poteidaia
Translated by ailis (


Invocation of the Muse:
I, Gabrielle, Bard of Poteidaia, ask for the vision of Melpomene, as the story I have to tell is a tragic one, and for the inspiration and guidance of Calliope, who brings to all who seek it the beauty of epic poetry.

I sing a song of Perdicas,
Who sleeps in Hades' arms.
Who went to Troy a soldier born
From Poteidaia's farms.

I sing a song of Perdicas,
Who learnt of Ares' ways,
In battlefields where legends grew
Blood suckl'd in hubris' haze.

The cry of Troy called, "Helen's ours!"
The cry of Greece the same
To own the rights to Zeus' child
Her beauty to lay claim.

For Paris' eyes had wandered far
From her, his stolen sin.
Kept Helen locked in Troy to spite
Menelaus, her nearest kin.

I sing a song of Perdicas,
Who'd fled from Cupid's bow.
In whose true aim he'd felt more sting
Than joy, in finding love.

I sing a song of Perdicas.
Without Athena's aid
His fate he'd meet in Greece's clutch
A warrior yet unmade.

From high upon the battlements,
He stood in watch three years,
Full-knowing he had chosen ill,
And like would die uncared.

Far past was any thought to glory.
Unspoke was any thanks.
But from Celesta's death-cold grip,
Came fast his rise in ranks.

Months, days proved long, all heroes gone,
Left were the mad and lame.
The siege pressed on with no respite
Until two strangers came.

A face he saw out on the field
Caused him to ope' the gate
To Warrior Princess and her friend,
Helen-sent, and not by Fate.

I sing a song of Perdicas,
Who joined in Xena's plan.
And saving those whose lives he could,
Chose where to take his stand.

I sing a song of Perdicas.
Naught but Hephestaus' steel,
Could breech the mighty Trojan gates--
But came a horse on wheels.

All made with sticks wrapped tight with twine,
It held a poor surprise,
That spawned the phrase, "Beware of Greeks,"
"The gifts they bear are lies!"

Then smuggled out of Troy's strong walls
While inside battles raged:
Princesses two, a bard and he
Saved by the horse's cage.

On freedom, all did bid farewell,
And set out two by two.
Good Perdicas, he left his love
As once she did eschew.

They traveled far, both fought to live,
Though she no blood did spill
But in regret, he'd give his life,
So sick of death, so ill.

In dreams he saw the face of men,
Of all that he had killed.
No vision seen could stop his hand
But that of Gabrielle.

A song I sing of Perdicas-
To drink of Mnemosyne
He spurned his past to find his love
To feel once more serene.

I sing a song of Perdicas,
Who wed in Hestia's sight,
Not knowing soon that he'd be dead
Short past his bridal night.

To get revenge for Xena's past,
Bloody Callisto came.
To kill the unprotected bard--
Now wife by Hestia's name.

But when her sword came down on flesh,
The cut was felt by two
For though the wound was Perdicas',
His lover cleaved was too.

And laid he in her arms bereft
Of all Asclepian gifts.
Dying without the strength to pass,
A word by his fair lips.

He'd searched to find Demeter's bliss,
To scorn the violent way.
Make of his life a different path;
Seek love and peace always.

I sing a song of Perdicas,
Who went with Hermes' guide,
A dinar his to pay the fare
For Charon's lonely ride.

The Maid wove true his weave of self,
The Mother measured short.
And Lachesis, she clipped my love,
Bringing this sad report.

For Perdicas I fear there are
No Islands of the Blessed--
His face now grey in Tartarus
Not Elysian-breeze caressed.

I ask the Fates to watch him there,
Consider this account:
That courage in the life he lived
Was never once in doubt.

This song I sing of Perdicas,
He sleeps in Hades, low.
A song for me to comfort bring
And tell where e'er I go.

Of Perdicas I sing a song
This hymn of what has passed,
In dying well, he took my place,
And sleeps in peace at last.


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