AN: well, it's been a long time since I've worked on this and I told myself I would finish it! I always keep my promises. I really only needed one more chapter and tried to wrap up as much as possible, though with a few strings left behind for the reader's own guesses of course. I really enjoyed writing this story and had forgotten how much I really loved working on it.

Thank you so much for continuing to read, everyone! It's been awesome. On to the next project ;)

Chapter 35

The following day Gabrielle and Xena arrived in Cairo, in search of Solan. Xena knew that Cleopatra had her son especially since he mysteriously disappeared in the square in Alexandria. The woman in the square was very helpful and she had no doubt that the Egyptian Queen would take Solan for her own benefit.

It seemed that Cleopatra was working with Caesar since the place was swarming with Romans. Every corner they turned, there were Roman soldiers walking the streets like they owned the place. Xena couldn't understand why the Egyptian Queen would dare ally with Caesar but she probably didn't ally with him, he probably willingly convinced her to become friends. Little did Cleopatra know that Caesar was a snake and although they appeared to be allies, Caesar wanted nothing to do with friendships with others. He wanted the entire world. The world would be under Rome's rule, including Egypt.

Egypt was a dying empire with only Cleopatra as the queen and her half brother as her king. Soon when she died, and when her half brother would come of age, he would be the new king. How convenient, Xena thought. The idea of Cleopatra and Caesar working together made her absolutely sick to her stomach. She couldn't believe that once she worked for Caesar.

Xena spotted the palace, surrounded by many homes and there were guards everywhere. She hid behind a large tree, peeking through the leaves to see the Romans pacing back and forth in front of the entrance. Gabrielle crouched down on her knees and peeked behind the wall to see many Romans, barely any Egyptian soldiers guarding the queen's palace.

"There are guards everywhere!" the blonde whispered.

"I know, it just makes things more interesting," the warrior smiled deviously and began climbing the tall wall and Gabrielle turned around to see Xena was no longer by her side.

She panicked and looked around then felt a leaf fall on her head. Glancing upward she saw Xena climbing the towering wall that surrounded the huge palace. She gasped and checked to see if the Romans were paying attention, which they weren't. lousy guards, she snorted.

"Xena!" she hissed and grabbed her boot. Xena growled and continued climbing up the wall. "What do you think you're doing?!"

"Going to save my son, what does it look like I'm doing?" Xena frowned and finally jumped over the wall and hid behind a large statue of Horus in the gardens.

Gabrielle huffed and then began climbing over the wall, following Xena. She really didn't think this was a good plan and if Xena did have a plan, she wasn't informed about it. the entire time she climbed the stone wall she cursed to herself. "Why do I get myself into these things?" she muttered. "Oh that's right, because Xena is insane, yet I am still here?" she sighed and finally made it to the top of the wall, then lost her footing and fell straight on top of Xena.

Xena growled and pushed the blonde off of her. Gabrielle smiled apologetically at her. "Sorry..." she whispered.

Then Roman guards appeared behind the two women and surrounded them with swords pointing at their necks. Xena gave her companion a glare and Gabrielle's cheeks paled in color. "Way to go."

Cleopatra lounged in her throne chambers, sitting on the floor playing a game with two of her servant women and Solan. She smiled down at the golden haired child and watched him energetically play with the marbles on the board.

"You like the game, Solan?" the queen asked nicely, running her fingers through his blonde locks.

The boy nodded and pushed the marbles along the board with a long stick. "Can I have more cake?" he eyed the queen with a sneaky grin and Cleopatra shook her head at the boy's persistence. He was obviously obsessed with cake. She wondered how such a vicious woman could give birth to such a sweet child. He was nothing like his mother, but perhaps he was more like his father, whoever that might be, she wondered.

"I think you've had enough sweets for now," she said and he sighed heavily. "Maybe later tonight, okay?" she winked and his entire face lit up.

The guards burst through the doors and threw Xena and Gabrielle onto the marble floor. Cleopatra turned her head and saw just the woman she wanted to see. Solan snapped his head and around saw his two mothers lying on the floor.

He threw the stick down and quickly got up, excited to finally see them both. "Mom!" he smiled and Xena lifted her head, smiling softly at her blonde son, excitingly running towards her.

Cleopatra frowned and grabbed Solan's arms, pulling him back towards her and wrapped her arms around the small boy. Solan grunted and tried to get free from her. "Let me go!" he yelled and Cleopatra growled, tightening her grip around the boy. "I want to see my mother!" he bit Cleopatra's hand and the queen yelped, letting him free.

Solan ran over to his mother and wrapped his arms around her neck. Xena smiled and then one of the Romans ripped Solan off of her and drug him on the ground.

"You brat!" Cleopatra snarled and looked at her hand with the small bite marks and saw droplets of blood. She squeezed her hand and glared at the boy. "Take him away!"

The guard immediately picked up the boy as he was screaming and kicking his little legs. Xena's eyes widened as she watched in horror as her son was being taken away somewhere in this large palace. The fire inside her surfaced and snapped her head around, glaring at the Egyptian queen. "Release him," she said.

The queen smirked and walked over to the trapped warrior. "Oh no, I can't do that. You are a fugitive Xena. You belong to Rome and Egypt is Rome now." She knelt down and touched Xena's cheek. "Did you honestly think you could just come in here and rescue your little boy so easily?" she laughed and pat Xena's cheek.

Xena snatched her face away from her in disgust and turned to see Gabrielle's mouth gagged and her arms tied behind her. She sighed and realized that this was one of her stupid ideas. She didn't think this through and it wasn't like she had entire army to back her up anymore. "Let Solan go, he has nothing to do with this. He is innocent."

Cleopatra nodded and shook her injured hand. "Yes..." she frowned and saw the bite Solan gave her on her hand was swelling slowly. "He is a charming boy. Hard to believe that he is your spawn." She smiled deviously and looked into Xena's fiery eyes. "Your genes must have skipped him," she winked.

"I see that you an ally of Caesar's..." Xena eyed the Romans holding her down behind her. "He is just using you."

"Just like you used him?" the queen spat.

Xena lowered her eyes and breathed in deeply, trying her best to remain calm. She figured that fighting back would only create more problems for her and since Solan was in the queen's hands, she didn't want anything to happen to him either.

"He doesn't want any allies, Cleopatra. He wants to take over the world. I was his commanding officer for years. He doesn't care about you or Egypt!" Xena glared into the queen's dark eyes.

Cleopatra cocked her head and folded her arms. "You do not seem to be the same monstrous woman that Caesar has described. But on the other hand..." she tapped her cheek with a serpent like smile, oh very so deceiving to her allies, even Caesar. "You could just be lying and you would say anything to discount Caesar. After all, you two hate each other."

Xena clenched her teeth, tightening her jaw. "If anyone knows Caesar the best, it would be me. I know everything about him and he is a liar! He doesn't care about Egypt. He just wants your empire for himself, Cleopatra. You don't have to believe me, but it's true. Now please, let Solan go."

"No!" the queen laughed and waved her hand. "Take them away." She sauntered back to her throne and watched Xena and her little blonde be taken away, and was surprised to see that Xena did not put up a huge fight.

As she sat on her throne, she lazily swung her leg over the armrest, lounging with a scowl on her face. "She is interesting..." she spoke aloud and snapped her fingers to her servant to bring over food and wine. "I almost expected her to be more..what is this word..."

"Vicious?" a servant said and the queen shook her head.

"Defiant. She did not even try to defend herself!" Cleopatra scoffed and snatched the wine from the servant boy. "Either she is a changed woman or she is lying through her teeth." She sipped the thick dark wine and tapped her fingers on her knee.

Xena and Gabrielle were brought to a prison down below the palace. Both were tied up together around a pole in the center of the dark dungeon. There were Roman guards outside the doors, listening and watching them every second.

Gabrielle sighed and managed to get the cloth out of her mouth, spitting out some sand in her mouth. She cringed in disgust and turned her head over her shoulder. "What a fine mess you got us into Xena!" she hissed.

Xena frowned and spoke over her shoulder, "maybe if you didn't make so much noise climbing over the wall, we wouldn't be in this mess!"

Gabrielle gasped. "You're going to blame me?!"

One of the Roman guards banged on the door outside the prison. "Quiet!" he shouted and both women shut their mouths.

Xena sighed heavily and Gabrielle tried wriggling her way out of these ropes, though she was tied with Xena's hands, which was just great, she thought. "This is all your fault." She whispered.

"It is not!" Xena hissed.

"Then whose fault is it, then, huh?" Gabrielle rolled her eyes and Xena finagled her fingers inside the ropes, tightening the ropes around Gabrielle's wrists. "Ouch! I don't think that is going to work, Xena!"

Xena groaned and took a good look around the room they were in. the Romans were outside, but they had the keys. They just needed something sharp to cut them free from these ropes and those bastards took every weapon on her body when they were captured.

"We need to find a way out of here..." she looked up at the ceiling and saw nothing of interest to her.

Gabrielle mocked, "why don't we ask your pal, Ares?" she snickered.

Xena frowned, furrowing her eyebrows. "Got something on your mind?"

"Yes! This is all your fault! We should have never came to Egypt in the first place! Now Solan is captured by Cleopatra and we're being held prisoners!" the blonde spat angrily.

"Are you finished?" Xena said and there was a tense silence in the room. "I don't need to hear a lecture from you, Gabrielle. We need to work together to get out of here and find Solan."

"Oh yeah? Then what?" Gabrielle hissed. "Where will we go to next? Obviously Caesar is still obsessed with you!" she banged her head against the pole and felt like screaming, but that definitely wasn't a good idea at the moment. "We're going to be hunted forever thanks to your meddling! First you revolt against Rome, then you try and murder Caesar oh and then, you get together with Sinbad, which you totally used him by the way. And now we're here, years later, still running –"

"Gabrielle!" Xena yelled. "I get it. I'm not perfect, but I don't see you leaving my side anytime soon. If you're so annoyed with me then why don't you just leave?"

The blonde sighed softly and tried to find Xena's fingers wrapped in the multiple intertwined ropes. She grabbed Xena's long fingers, squeezing as tightly as she could. "I'm sorry, I guess I'm just angry that we keep getting into these situations. I don't want this to go on forever. I would never leave you. I've been with you too long to do that..." she muttered the last bit.

Xena smiled and tried to turn around, to see if she could get one look at Gabrielle, or at least be closer to her. "I told you we are too different. You don't belong with me."

"Too late to turn back now," Gabrielle scoffed.

"Then let's figure a way to get out of here," Xena said and Gabrielle nodded, giving her fingers one last squeeze. She spotted a table filled with all sorts of tools and small weapons. "We need to get to that table."

Gabrielle looked over her opposite shoulder and saw the table. It was definitely out of her reach. "How?"

"I'm working on it," Xena bit her bottom lip and tried to formulate a plan in her head. At this rate, they were going to be stuck in here for days.

In Carthage, Princess Dido was the leader of her kingdom since her father died and so far, everything was going well. Although, since she allied with Caesar and was somewhat allies with Egypt, she had a fear in the back of her mind that Cleopatra would try and overthrow her empire. Carthage wasn't nearly as big as Egypt and she had little control over the sea imports and exports from other areas around the world.

The only footing she had was her trade with Anatolia. That territory had a lot to offer considering they had an abundance of minerals and silks that came through Asia every year. Anatolia was definitely a place that every sane person wanted to trade with. If they were good rulers, they'd want Anatolia and their commerce, except Caesar.

The Roman elite did not want anything from Anatolia even though Cleopatra and her entire dynasty wanted control of Anatolia. Caesar wanted nothing to do with the territory and Dido began to think it was due to Xena's infectious treason that tainted the territory years ago. Xena invaded Anatolia and claimed the barren fields as her own, she made an entire life there, she even had a child there. Caesar still had Xena on his hit list, though Dido believed that Xena wasn't the same anymore. If she was, she would have appeared sooner or later from the darkness.

Princess Dido kept pondering over her alliance with the Roman emperor and then she was interrupted by one of her guards that knocked on her door. She sighed and told her maid to open the door. The dark skinned man curtly bowed his head then marched over to the bed, handing his princess the letter in his hand.

She frowned and unraveled the scroll, reading over it carefully. Her eyes widened and she growled, throwing the letter on the ground. The guard had no idea what was going on obviously. The princess quickly got out of bed and reached for her robe.

"I should have never trusted that lying snake," she stormed out of the room, almost pushing her maid into the wall.

Her advisor waited in the throne chambers talking with a few councilmen, Roman councilmen of course. All eyes were on her as soon as she entered the room. Though, the Romans shied away as soon as they saw she wasn't properly dressed at all. Her wild curly brown hair was unkempt and she wasn't wearing anything suitable underneath her robe either.

"What is the meaning of this letter? Did you know about this?" she asked her advisor.

He nervously smiled and dismissed the Roman soldiers. They eagerly left the chamber and now the princess and him were alone. "Your highness, I did not know what was in the letter, but I had a feeling that something like this would happen eventually."

Dido groaned and folded her arms. "Cleopatra has grown too arrogant for her own good. She thinks that since Caesar is her ally, she can run over me like a bug in water." She huffed, blowing her hair away from her face. Her advisor was about to interrupt, but she kept going. "Who does she think she is? Queen of the world?" she let out an annoyed yell and her advisor cringed.

"Princess, the queen obviously wants your land because she believes that she had something against you. She is trying to one up you."

"Her alliance with Caesar means nothing!" Dido growled. "She is nothing without him! Her empire is dying and she needs his help! I would not be surprised if she sleeps with him," she huffed. "My father has traded with her for years! Why has she suddenly decided to betray me?"

The advisor smiled kindly and placed his hand on Dido's shoulder. "Your majesty, these things happen. The best thing to do is to send her a response as soon as possible so we can prevent a war."

"How can two allies of Rome war with each other? Unless..." her eyes darkened. "She has been given permission by Caesar himself..."

Meanwhile in Rome, Caesar visited his prisoner and smiled down at the brother of Xena. "Toris, my trusted soldier gone wrong," the emperor chuckled.

Toris lifted his tired eyes at the emperor. He had hoped one day that Xena would come for him, though she had no idea he was trapped here and he had himself to blame. He worked for Caesar originally to kill Xena but after he saw her, she was alone and not the woman whom he claimed her to be. She wasn't a monster, but it was her fault he was stuck in here. He had been here for three years and to be honest, he didn't think he was going to be here for that long. He thought that he would have died already, but the Romans were known for their infamous torture methods.

"I have decided to free you," Caesar said and waved his hand at the soldiers. They began unlocking the shackles around Toris' wrists and ankles. The beaten ex-soldier stood and rubbed his sore wrists. He didn't think he was going to be let go.

"But...why?" Toris asked.

Caesar sighed heavily. "You are of no use to me now. Xena is nowhere to be found. She is very good at hiding and I simply don't have time to find her like I used to," he smiled and Toris looked at him with the most shocked face he had ever seen. "She obviously does not want to be found. You are free to go."

The emperor turned and began walking out of the prison cell. Toris winced and didn't realize how weak his ankles were, he held onto the wall for balance. "And..." he croaked and Caesar turned around slowly. "And what do find her? What will you do?"

The Roman smiled widely. "I will kill her of course and that child of hers. I know she has the child."

Toris' eyes widened. "Child? No, the child has nothing to do with this feud you two have!"

"The child is her seed. She brought this upon herself, Toris. Now, you are free to go, don't make me change my mind." Caesar frowned then left the prison to go back to his office.

Hours later, he was bombarded with numerous amounts of documents to sign and look over. He hated doing this and it took weeks to get through every stack he received. He wish someone else would do this for him, but someone has to make laws, right?

He sighed and then found a letter on his desk, from Egypt. He smiled and knew that it was from his lover in Egypt. "Cleopatra," he whispered and opened the letter. It must have just arrived and he overlooked it. being back in Rome was strange without her by his side. He spent the last year in Egypt, going back and forth between Rome and Cairo. He had developed a fond relationship with the queen. He hoped one day they could live together and not so far apart.

He stood with wide eyes. "She has Xena!" he smiled and then kept reading onward. He saw the date it was sent and that was only a week ago. He wondered how long Xena had been there, but he didn't care. He wanted her head and he would have it at last. Cleopatra also had Xena's son, which made this so easy, too easy, he thought.

He kept reading and then a frown appeared on his lips. Cleopatra also added that she was pregnant. It definitely wasn't from her half brother, whom was also her temporary husband. He was far too young, only twelve years old. Of course she's pregnant, he thought. Another thing to add to my list.

He ran out of his office and the guards immediately saluted to him. "Prepare my ship. We are leaving to Egypt at once."

Xena's plan of getting the weapons off the table turned out be fruitless and the guards caught her trying to push over the table with her long legs. Much to Gabrielle's demise, Cleopatra moved them both into a different cell and far apart from each other. Each had their own cell and were tied to the bars.

Gabrielle sighed, staring at the wall then looked to Xena, sitting so far away from her. "Now what?" she growled.

Xena frowned. "I will find a way out of here. Knowing Cleopatra, she has Solan hidden somewhere. She has probably alerted Caesar that I am here."

"Oh great!" Gabrielle laughed sadly. "That's just what we need!"

"Your attitude isn't helping, Gabrielle," Xena mused and had been working on rubbing the ropes against the bars, sliding her wrists up and down. She had been working on this for two days now and every so often she heard the rope snap into smaller pieces. Just a little longer, she told herself, and we are free.

"You know, I'm surprised she hasn't killed us yet," Gabrielle sighed. "Egypt felt so promising. I wish we could escape to some place where I don't're not wanted!"

Xena rolled her eyes and then finally she had her wrists free and chuckled. Jumping to her feet Gabrielle turned and saw she was free. She whistled over at the guards in the far corner and they turned their heads, growling at her. She smiled and waved her free hands at them.

The Romans came rushing towards her and she kicked one in the shin through the metal cell bars. She then wrapped her arm around his neck, and with a swift twist, she killed him instantly. The other guard came running towards the cell and she grabbed the dead Roman's sword and plunged it into his gut.

Gabrielle closed her eyes and sighed heavily. "Well, that's one way to go about it I guess."

Xena smiled and then the Roman fell backwards, shoving the blade further into his midsection. She quickly grabbed the set of keys off the dead Roman's belt and tried four keys until she unlocked the doors.

Hastily, she ran to Gabrielle's cell and unlocked it and cut the ropes with the sword. "You can thank me later." She grinned and the blonde smiled up at her then ran behind her towards the exit. Gabrielle quickly ran back and grabbed the sword out of the Roman's gut and followed Xena.

Cleopatra sat with her servants in the large throne chamber and heard a lot of swords clashing with each other in the hallway. She frowned and wiped her hands on her white gown. She stood and then saw her guards being stabbed to death. Her eyes grew in fear and saw Xena with her blonde pet, standing in the doorway.

"Cleopatra," Xena smiled, pointing the blade at the frightened queen. "Where is my son?"

"You just don't give up do you?" Cleopatra smirked.

"Were you expecting less?" Xena raised her eyebrow. "I'm not going to ask again."

"Does it matter if I tell you? I already told Caesar that you are here. I'm sure he is already on his way to claim his bounty!" Cleopatra smiled, giggling softly.

Xena stepped forward and had no fear killing the queen since all her guards were dead, except the Romans outside the palace. "Cleopatra...for the last time, tell me where Solan is or I'll kill you right here."

The queen stood from her throne and approached Xena fearlessly. "Oh but you can't do that. Would you kill a woman carrying an emperor's child?" she grinned.

Xena's eyes widened and she cringed in disgust. Gabrielle's crinkled her nose and shook her head. "Don't make me puke," she thrust the sword at the Egyptian woman. "All the more reason to kill you. Destroy the entire Caesarian line." She winked and Cleopatra's smile faded. "Unless you want to fight me? What do you say, Cleopatra? Feeling daring?" her eyes wild and instilling fear in the queen.

She slowly backed away from the warrior and folded her arms with a disgusted scowl on her face. "He is upstairs in the bathing quarters." Xena nodded to Gabrielle and they left the room in a hurry. "Do not think Caesar won't find you!" she called out and huffed, returning to sit on her throne. One of the maids tried to give her some fruit and she smacked the tray out of the maid's hand, fruit spilling all over the ground. Cleopatra bit her fingernails out of nervousness.

Xena ran upstairs and looked at all the large doors down the hallway. Gabrielle's jaw dropped and she began opening every single door to find Solan. "He could be in anyone of these rooms!" Gabrielle said and Xena kicked open every door and found nothing so far.

She then saw a door at the end of the hall and ran to it with Gabrielle quickly following behind. She tried to turn the knob and it was locked. Grunting she pressed her ear against the door. "Solan?"

"Mom!" he yelled and banged on the door with his small fists from the other side.

Gabrielle and Xena shared a smile. "Stay away from the door, Solan," Xena said and took a step back. She grit her teeth and swung her sword, cutting off the knob, then kicked the door open. She smiled immediately seeing her blonde son and knelt down, hugging him warmly.

"Can we leave now?" Solan said and Xena kissed his forehead then took a good look at his face and frowned.

She tried wiping off the kohl eyeliner around his eyes and Solan whined. "Stop!" he begged, pushing her hand away from his face.

Gabrielle heard footsteps coming up the stairs and her heart raced. "Um, Xena, we need to leave."

Xena nodded and grabbed hold of Solan's hand and took off down the hallway. They were met with a group of elite Romans and Solan gasped. The three ran down a separate hall and Solan had trouble keeping up with both of them.

He yelped and tripped over his own feet. Xena groaned and picked up the small boy into her arms and ran down a flight of stairs, leading towards the back entrance of the palace. Gabrielle fearfully looked behind her and heard the Romans chasing after them.

"Do you have any ideas?!" Gabrielle yelled as they turned tight corners in the palace maze.

"Oh now you like my ideas?" Xena teased.

All three exited the palace and Xena looked at the docks. There was a ship and people were boarding, getting ready to leave. There was no way she was going to stay here and allow Caesar to take her again, not this time.

She put Solan down and told him to run as fast as he could towards the ship. She grabbed Gabrielle's hand and took off running behind Solan. Gabrielle immediately saw the ship and began shaking her head. "Oh, no! Xena! Are you insane?!"

Xena smiled sneakily, "why do you keep asking me that like it's a surprise?" she jested.

Cleopatra ran outside with her Egyptian guards and saw Xena, Gabrielle and Solan running onto the ship just before it set sail into the Mediterranean Sea. She yelled furiously watching them escape and so quickly too. She was sure that Caesar's men would have caught them already. "You idiots are worth nothing!" she yelled at a tall Roman and pushed the horde out of the way, storming back into her palace to sulk. She would have terrible news for Caesar when he arrived in Cairo in a few days.

Nearly half a day after departing from Cairo's port, Xena leaned over the railing of the ship, looking at the orange sunset. She smiled and thought that her days of being on ships had come to an end but apparently not. She thought of Sinbad and how everyone feared him yet many loved him. He was the master of the seas and he was also very kind, even though he was a thief.

She began to think that she had mistreated Sinbad so horribly, Gabrielle made that a point several times. Now that Sinbad had been dead for years, she realized that she once treated everyone in her path like they were dirt –nothing. They meant nothing to her ambitions but now those ambitions were long gone. But at least she had two things that reminded her to keep her steady on a new path, a good path. Solan, her son, given to her by Sinbad, would always be a reminder of the infamous sailor and his generosity. Of course, she couldn't forget Gabrielle. The two never saw eye to eye at first, but soon enough, Xena realized that Gabrielle wasn't going anywhere. She had done so much for her already. She took care of Solan when she couldn't. Xena thought she couldn't ever thank Gabrielle enough for what she had done. She was more than a friend.

"How do I look?!" Solan startled Xena in her thoughts and she turned to see him with his face washed and clear of any eye makeup. He was also wearing more suitable clothes, not that awful white cloth that Egyptian's called clothes.

Xena smiled and knelt down, stretching her arms out. "You look very nice," she said and he ran to her, wrapping her arms around her neck. She squeezed his small body tightly and he gasped for air.

"Mom!" he begged and she chuckled softly, pulling away from him. He smiled, touching her dark hair. "Don't ever take me to Egypt again," he said and Gabrielle stifled a laugh.

"I promise, we won't be going back," his mother winked and she then slapped his thigh gently and his eyes widened. "But don't ever run off like that again! You could have been killed!"

Solan lowered his head. "Okay...I'm sorry." He said and Xena nodded, thankful to hear that he obviously understood that he had done something wrong. "So, where are we going?" he smile lit up his entire face. He saw the foremast and immediately wanted to climb to the top to see the ocean. He ran off and Xena frowned.

"Xena..." Gabrielle warned.

The warrior mother grabbed a rope from the railing and stepped forward. "Don't worry Gabrielle..." she smiled and tossed the rope forward, wrapping it around Solan's small frame and pulled him in.

"Hey!" he groaned and tried to set himself free from the ropes. "I just wanted to look!" he pouted.

Xena shook her head. "I think you've had enough adventures for today," she yanked his body close to hers and tied the rope to her belt loop. "Now you will just have to spend the rest of the day with me and Gabrielle."

He gasped. "But mom!"

"It'll be fun," Xena smiled and turned to Gabrielle. "Right?"

The blonde nodded and looked down at the sad boy, reluctantly stuck to his mother's side, literally. "Oh yes, loads of fun..." she chuckled and looked out at the vast ocean. Solan grumbled to himself and plopped down on the deck, pouting that he was unable to leave and do what he wanted. "So...where are we going exactly?" she nudged Xena's arm.

"Somewhere far from here," Xena said, grabbing the blonde's hand firmly. She felt a tug on her belt and saw Solan trying to crawl away. She yanked on the rope and he fell onto his back with a loud thump. "I told you, you're not leaving my side." She warned and Solan whined.