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#V914 - Episode 14
EXT. VILLAGE – EVENING
Xena and Gabrielle wearily walk into a village. They look like they’ve seen better days. Xena is covered from the waist down in what can only be assumed is mud. Gabrielle has a bandage on her right bicep; her hair is sticking up in every direction possible. Her face and the rest of the exposed skin is marred with soot and dirt. They’re both covered in a variety of bruises and cuts. Even Argo looks like she has had better days; her head is down, her ears are back, her fur dirty and she’s limping on her left front foot.
Earthquakes, fires, mudslides
and riots... what ELSE could
be in store for us?
Personally, I’m hoping for a
hot bath and a warm bed.
Oh yes, food is a must.
You go find an inn and I’ll
get Argo to the stable
and find a blacksmith.
I have dirt in places that may
never come clean and I think
my boots have finally given up.
I think a couple days off are in order.
You know, we could use the place
Aphrodite set up for us. Less
chance of something coming up.
I’d rather keep my feet on the
ground, and last time I checked
Olympus doesn’t have a blacksmith.
Point taken. I’ll get a room.
Meet you there.
I won’t be long.
EXT. INN – EVENING
Hefting her saddlebags on her shoulder, Gabrielle eyes the local inn, which seems to be bustling with activity. Women are seated at tables outside the inn, talking and drinking and generally having a good time. She’s really too tired to notice that the majority of people there seem to be women who are either tall and brunette or shorter and blonde.
As she makes her way to the door a few of the women stop to stare at her. This she notices. Stopping in her tracks, she straightens and turns to face them.
They don’t say anything as they all look away or shrug before going back to whatever they were doing.
With a glare and a groan she continues inside.
INT. INN – EVENING
Moving through a packed common room, Gabrielle finally makes her way to the counter where the innkeeper and several assistants are busy taking care of the rowdy clientele.
She raises her hand to try and capture someone’s attention. Anyone will do but she’s not having a huge amount of luck.
Excuse… hey… could…?
All around her, men and women are laughing and drinking. Generally a good time is being had by all, except for Gabrielle who is being shoved and jostled around the busy counter.
Having had enough, there is a shrill ear-piercing whistle that stops all movement and sound in the place. Every set of eyes turn to the irritated little blonde at the bar.
She looks up, seeing the innkeeper and beckoning him with the crook of her finger.
The innkeeper gulps and takes a tentative step forward.
You don’t have to say
a word. Just nod.
The innkeeper nods, a slight sweat starting to trickle down the side of his face.
I need a room.
Do you have one?
He nods again.
Can I get a bath
and a meal?
He nods twice.
Good. The key please?
Turning to a bank of small boxes on the wall he pulls a key out and drops in on the counter by her hand almost afraid she’s going to take his hand off if he gets too close.
Gabrielle takes a few coins out of her pouch and lays them on the counter next to the key.
Is that enough?
He nods for the last time as Gabrielle takes the key and heads for the steps. When she is on the third step the entire room breaks out into a round of whistles and applause for her performance at the counter.
With a smile that borders between embarrassed and amused, she gives the crowd a slight wave and continues up the steps.
EXT. VILLAGE – EVENING
Xena is walking through the village, which she notices seems to be filled with people that are somehow familiar, but yet very strange.
As she proceeds through the crowded streets she bumps into a woman, wearing something that resembles Amazon leathers.
Do I know you?
Oh no. If we’d met
I’d remember you.
Right... hold that thought.
Xena manages to escape before the woman can say anything else.
Continuing through the streets, she just can’t put her finger on what’s bothering her about this village. She just knows that there is something not… quite… right.
INT. INN – EVENING
Xena enters the same inn where Gabrielle has procured a room. If it is possible, the crowd is larger and drunker now.
Xena is watching everyone and she notices that the crowd is predominantly female. There are a few men strewn through the room but they are as scarce as hen’s teeth.
She shoulders through the crowd to the counter. The barkeep looks harried, but he gives her a smile.
What can I get you?
My friend came in here,
looking for a room.
Lady, do you know how many
rooms I’ve rented? Can you
be a little more specific?
What’s going on here anyway?
They’re here for some
symposium. Great for
business; lousy for my nerves.
Before Xena can comment, she feels a hand on her arms and turns to find Gabrielle.
Come with me. I have
something to show you.
Xena follows Gabrielle through the crowd to the rear of the inn. The crowd has thinned out and Gabrielle points to a sign in the wall.
The sign reads:
Eighteenth Annual Symposium for
Bards and Warriors
Guest of honor
Autolycus, The King of Thieves
What in hades?
I don’t know, but I have
a feeling it involves us
to some extent.
END OF TEASER