Gabrielle took in a big breath, filling her lungs with life giving air. The moment they were inside the black room, the pink snake had vanished. Ares still had his strong arms around her waist, still composed.

"Doesn't any of this bother you?" Gabrielle asked him as she stretched out her arms. She felt walls all around them. Aphrodite had locked them inside a closet! "Your sister killed three people! She must have gone bonkers! And why did she throw us in here? This is a closet, a CLOSET!"

"Tell me, Gabrielle." Ares voice said in the darkness, his breath hot against her ear. "Do you know what people do in a closet at a party?"

"What are you talking about?" She huffed. "Don't you understand what Aphrodite just did? She admitted to killing Xena and Iolaus and Hercules! She killed them!"

"Did she now?" He breathed.

His breath seemed hotter, closer now. She felt her back shoved against the cold stone wall as Ares pressed his hard body against hers. Then his mouth was on hers, kissing her. To her surprise, she felt herself kissing him back. As if of their own accord, her arms tangled themselves around his neck.

Bright light assaulted her eyes as the closet door was thrown open.

Gabrielle froze in mid kiss as loud clapping came from the doorway. Peering over Ares' shoulder she saw Xena, Hercules, Iolaus and Aphrodite! They were standing in the doorway clapping, big grins on their faces. Heat creeped up into her face when she realized she had been caught kissing with Ares. Worse, he wouldn't stop kissing! Now his mouth trailed down to her neck!

"We were wondering how we were going to get you into a closet with Ares." Xena laughed. "Looks like Aphrodite's plan worked, I'd say."

"But you're dead!" Gabrielle blurted. "I saw your body!"

"You mean you saw Discord pretending to be me." Xena explained with a smile. "The Gods can make themselves look exactly like other people, you know. And you can stick objects inside their bodies without harming them. Remember how I once stuck my sword right through Ares? Didn't bother him at all. Apollo was pretending to be Iolaus and Strife was playing Hercules. They had a great time. They also did all the other tricks."

"Wasn't it a great party?" Aphrodite squealed with excitement, her old bubbly self again. Of course, she still wore the black dress. "That was the Trick. Now you get the Treat. You two make such a cute couple! Ar has been plotting how to get you into that closet for years. Of course, HE couldn't think up any decent plans. Love is MY job!"

Xena started to close the closet door.

"What? Wait!" Gabrielle cried as she saw the door closing, the rectangle of light getting smaller and smaller. "You can't leave me in here with him!"

Aphrodite's voice drifted to her through the small opening that remained. "Come on! I got sweets and Treats for everyone!"

Music started up in the other room.


CLUNK. The door closed.

"Did you know it was all a trick, that there was no Evil Spirit?" Gabrielle asked Ares.

"Of course." Ares answered as he stopped kissing for a moment so he could speak. "But since I finally had you in my arms I sure wasn't going to ruin it! But now that I got you, I'm not letting you go. Besides, kissing in closets is a tradition at Sis's parties. I just never had anyone to kiss with before."

Any other questions on Gabrielle's lips were silenced forever by another kiss.