The Judging of the Queen





Disclaimer: It has been so many years, now, since the XWP series ceased its regular seasons, and since the release of the DVDs of the Seriesí episodes. The hugely unreal idea that the producers, directors, and actors of the original series would ever consider reviving the thing is probably a fading fantasy.

With todayís inhuman conglomerates itís anybodyís guess who really owns the sole rights to the characters and stories of XWP - but as far as I know, Xena: Warrior Princess, Gabrielle, and all other characters who have appeared in the syndicated series Xena: Warrior Princess, are the sole copyright property of MCA/Universal and Renaissance Pictures. I feel fully confident that Iím depriving no one of their rightful livelihood by writing this story.

Iím just grateful that the characters of Xena and Gabrielle were invented in the first place, and were given a chance to grow - through the (occasionally inspired and, when unfettered by the conventions of corporate sponsors, even uninhibited) good offices of a few good writers and producers. We all know there were some episodes that Really Mattered, and others that were Sooo Baaddd.Mostly, though, I pay homage to the considerable courage and passion exhibited by the lead actors Lucy Lawless and Renee OíConnor, who brought the characters of Xena and Gabrielle to life.Their performances inspired me to write this story. If they are cursed to be remembered mostly for their work in giving these characters depth and dimension, they could suffer a worse fate! Creating new and viable archetypes is no mean feat, and deserves the accolades of grateful generations of women yet to come, who will, I am sure, be inspired by them.



Violence: It is doubtful that this story will include violence, other than in flashback. Gabrielle and Xena had enough lifetimes of that in their early years together. They have passed on to greater things, now.This story seeks to explore that premise. It is post-FIN, in terms of the original series. It, too, is an attempt to arrive at closure that satisfies the soul, beyond the debacle of the seriesí finish. So if you want kick-butt action, there are some excellent fanfic stories out there for that.



Main text (not Subtext!): The only other disclaimer is, of course, the one about it being about two women who love, honor and cherish each other above all others, through all of their many lifetimes together, and who wouldnít dream of being inhibited or embarrassed about expressing that love as they choose. Luckily, they donít have to be Warrior and Bard in our current time period, where people are so cowed and limited by the repression of our society, and so very, very afraid of ďthe love that dares to speak its name.Ē (And yes, the misquoting is intended!) But if you are enthralled by that peculiarly twisted and regressive form of prejudice, read no further!)


Feedback about this story is gladly accepted. Itís my first venture onto the high wire of fanfic, so please be honest, but kind!



[Note: Quotations are credited at the end of the story. I recommend the sources!]



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Chapter 1