A/N: Crossover with Xena, Wrestling, and Charmed. Viktoria is played by the wrestling world's very own Victoria (Lisa Marie Varon). Holli is played by Holly Marie Combs. Discord is Meighan Desmond.
Disclaimer: I don't own any of the above mentioned things, I'm just playing with them.
THE TROUBLE WITH PRIESTESSES
Discord was a goddess.
Goddesses had temples and priests and priestesses and were generally respected and adored.
Discord had no temples, no priests, no priestesses, and was barely recognized as part of the pantheon.
This did not sit well with Discord. At all. She created mayhem, disorder, chaos, turmoil and was pretty fun to have around! So why didn't she have the temples, the priests, the priestesses, or the adoration? It was bogus if you asked Discord. New gods and goddesses, fresh ones, with ideas and power and a vision got no respect! The pantheon shut them out and so did the people.
Unfair. Discord could stand it no longer.
She would be the first of the new goddesses to get all those things, the first to amass a worshipful following and have temples built in her honor. And to do that, she first needed loyal followers.
She'd been staking out this brothel for weeks. Their matron goddess was Aphrodite and Discord would love nothing more than to take a few of Dite's worshippers into her own fold, it would irritate the goddess of Love so much to know she'd lost to Discord.
So she watched the comings and goings of the place, checking out customers and ladies of negotiable virtue for recruits. She thought she had the perfect pair.
The first was a muscular brunette with strong features and sharp eyes. She was less of a whore more of a bodyguard for the madam and obviously a slave and was clearly disillusioned with life in the whorehouse. The men she tossed out were philandering bastards usually too drunk to realize she was beating them up, which clearly dissatisfied her. She mentioned to the madam every so often about wanting to join hunting parties or participate in gladiatorial games but the madam, her owner, would not hear of it.
The other was a smaller brunette with an oval face and defined eyebrows. She was a kitchen maid for the brothel working off a debt owed by her now deceased father which, by Discord's reckoning, kept getting bigger every time the young woman asked the madam about it. She prepared and delivered meals to guests and employees. She was occasionally propositioned by the madam and by guests, she adamantly refused and loathed the attentions of the men but it was only a matter of time before one of them didn't take no for an answer.
These two were perfect for Discord's plans. They looked more than eager to leave and cause a little trouble on the way out. Surely they'd be glad to serve a new goddess.
Discord approached the kitchen maid first as she was easier to catch alone as she was fetching water from the town well.
When the young woman had dropped the bucket into the well and started hauling it back up Discord shimmered into sight on the edge of the well causing the woman to yelp and drop the bucket. Discord grinned.
"You look like you could use a hand," Discord said, glancing between the young woman and the sinking bucket. The woman yanked on the rope to pull the bucket up and ignored Discord, which only served the make the goddess more interested.
"Come on, let me help you out," Discord wheedled in a teasing voice.
"Go away," the kitchen maid said, "I don't need help."
Discord turned serious, "Maybe not with this, but getting out of that brothel you definitely need some help." Seeing she clearly had the young woman's attention she continued, "Help I'm willing, even happy, to provide."
The woman looked suspicious, rightfully so Discord gave her credit for that, and asked, "Why would you help me?"
"Look," Discord stated, "You're miserable in that place. I get you out of there and you won't have to fend off grabby men or face down the madam ever again. Sound good?"
"Too good. What's in it for you?" the woman shrewdly asked.
Discord smirked, "I'm a goddess in need of worshippers. I take you out of there and you come to serve me for a while. Do we have a deal?"
The woman grimaced and returned to pulling the bucket out of the well, "Sounds like I'd be switching one unwanted servitude for another. So, thanks but no thanks."
"You know the madam keeps increasing the amount of the debt you're working off," Discord tried to get a rise out of the woman.
"I know," the woman said with resignation, "There's nothing I can do to prove it, though. And I've got nowhere else to go now that my father is dead. At least she keeps a roof over my head and food in my belly."
"And how long before she's whoring you out to her customers instead of just making and serving food?"
"And serving you would be any different? At least here I'm only dealing with mortals." The bucket finally was in reach to tug fully out of the well, which the woman did and started walking back to the brothel.
"Well, if you change your mind, just give me a shout. The name's Discord." With that Discord shimmered out of sight and continued to watch the kitchen maid as she went back looking thoughtful.
Discord knew a push would be necessary to get the kitchen maid to ditch the brothel and she had just the plan. She was going to make life unbearable for the woman, she would push more men into pawing at her and push the madam into treating her worse than usual…if she made things bad enough the woman would come running.
It was harder to get the slave alone since the madam had her on a pretty short leash most of the time, but the slave slept in separate quarters and that's where Discord appeared to her late one night.
"You look like a woman dissatisfied with life," Discord said.
"No," the slave replied sarcastically, "Really? I don't look like this is the happiest I've ever been? Shocking. I'm so thrilled to be that bitch's guard dog, really."
Discord smirked, "How would you feel if I told you I could take you away from here?"
"First, elated. Second, suspicious. I want out of here and if you can do it make it happen. But tell me what you're going to want in return first. I don't like getting favors from gods without knowing their price."
"Smart for a slave."
The slave bristled, "I'm an Amazon, not some ignorant peasant. And I don't like dealing with gods I don't know."
Discord smirked a little harder. An Amazon! This one really is a prize. "I'm Discord," she said, "And you?
Discord nodded, filing that name away, "As to the price of your freedom…I need worshippers. I take you out of here and you come to work for me for a while."
"Would I be your slave, then? Trading physical shackles for mystical ones?" the Amazon questioned bitterly.
"Actually, you'd be one of my priestesses." She saw the woman's clearly disbelieving look and reluctantly explained herself, "I'm building this worship from the ground up. You'd be one of the first under my patronage."
"One of," the Amazon said, "So there are others?"
"Well, there's one I'm working on. And I could actually use your help with her."
"What would I have to do?"
"There's a kitchen maid here, a little brunette, you know her?"
The Amazon nodded, she'd thought the girl a little mousy but cute in her own way…and there was no denying the girl could cook.
"Excellent. I need you to help make her life here miserable, without appearing to do anything at all."
"So I'd have to stick around here until she gets fed up and joins you?"
"And you'd take me out of here?"
Discord nodded again.
"And I'd get to cause some damage on the way out?"
Discord grinned, "I think that can be arranged."
The next two weeks were made pure hell for the kitchen maid.
Viktoria sabotaged meals she made and somehow managed to trip her up without ever moving.
Discord invisibly pushed more and more horny patrons towards the maid and whispered in the madam's ear how dissatisfied she was with the girl.
It got to the point where the maid couldn't move without being molested by men or accosted by the madam. Finally, fed up, she stomped out of the kitchen and shouted Discord's name into the sky.
"Yes?" Discord shimmered into sight just behind the startled maid.
"I want the deal," she said, "Take me out of here and I'll come work for you."
"Sure thing, sweetheart," Discord said, "Just let me get our other recruit."
Discord shimmered out and reappeared with the Viktoria in tow as shouting started up in the brothel.
"Time to go, my darlings," Discord said, "Take my hands."
"Wait," the kitchen maid said, "Can't we get a little payback before we go?"
"Don't worry, Holli," Viktoria replied with a feral grin, "I mixed a laxative into the stew we just served and set a slow burning fire in Madam Saffron's room. The brothel will burn down while everyone is fighting for use of the outhouses."
"Nice," Discord said, "Very nice. Now let's go. We've got things to do my priestesses."
Several weeks later saw Holli and Viktoria building Discord a decent amount of followers and overseeing construction of a lavish temple, but bickering over the smallest of things.
"I'm telling you," Viktoria said, "The draperies should be black. She wears black all the time!"
"Just because she wears it," Holli replied in a tight voice, "doesn't mean she wants to look at it all the time! Who would want their temple to look like a dungeon? Maybe she wants a little color in there."
"Maybe you want a little more color in your face," Viktoria said as she raised a fist to shake under Holli's nose.
Holli remained unimpressed, "What makes you think you know her so well, huh?"
"She recruited me first, that puts me in charge!"
"She did not!"
"She did. She recruited me to help get you to join her."
"Ha! So she wanted me first!" Holli replied triumphantly, "You were only first because I said no the first time she asked."
The two continued fighting in this vein for some time, ignoring the things going on around them. They actually quite enjoyed these little tiffs. It had been a long time since they'd been able to argue with anyone without fear of a lashing; they relished the opportunity to release some years of pent up aggression and anger in a torrent of shouted arguments. But there was a kernel of real conflict in this fight. They truly didn't know who was in charge here and it was starting to really affect their working relationship and their tentative friendship.
They were in the middle of another spirited shouting match when Discord appeared and shouted, "Ladies! What is going on here?"
Viktoria turned to face her goddess, "Tell her I'm in charge here, that I'm head priestess."
"No," Holli said also facing their goddess, "Tell her I'm the head priestess."
"That's what you're fighting about? You're supposed to be building my temple!"
Holli waved her hand towards the ever growing building, "Never mind about the temple, this is important! Tell her I'm in charge. You wanted to recruit me first, which means I should be in charge!"
"You actually did recruit me first," Viktoria heatedly said, "that means I should be in charge. Tell her!"
"Those are both stupid reasons to put someone in charge," Discord said, a little mystified that this had become such a problem. As far as she was concerned she, the goddess, was in charge and they should both get over themselves.
"Well," Holli said, "If we can't decide based on that then you need to pick one of us to be head priestess."
"What? I can't decide between you two!"
"You have to!" Viktoria said, "We'll never get anything done if we don't know who trumps who."
"But you both bring different things to the table," Discord whined, "Can't you two just be co-head priestesses?"
"No!" Both mortals shouted.
"Well, I have no idea how to choose," Discord said, then she had an idea, "Which means I'll need help to pick." She shouted, "ARES!"
The God of War winked into existence beside his protégé and looked over the scene unhappily, "I was in the middle of something, Discord. This had better be good."
"I can't decide which of these two should be my head priestess," Discord told him.
"You called me here for this?" When Discord nodded he looked at her blankly for a long moment. "You're an idiot," he said to Discord, then cast his eyes towards the two candidates, sizing them up, "You two, fight to the death. Whoever wins is the head priestess."
Startled the two mortal women looked to their goddess, she still looked miffed about being called an idiot, "Discord?"
Discord glared at Ares but said, "Yeah. What he said. Fight to the death. Go for it."
Holli took off running towards the unfinished temple. She was at a huge disadvantage in this. She was not a fighter by any stretch of the imagination while she'd seen Viktoria lift men three times her size and throw them like they were rag dolls. She hoped to buy herself time by finding cover and a weapon in the confusing maze of the temple. She was lucky she was faster than Viktoria because the Amazon would have easily defeated her had she stayed still. She disappeared into the construction area.
Viktoria huffed after her smaller opponent but entered the construction area very cautiously, she had no desire to be blindsided by whatever the clever kitchen maid cooked up. She found a long hammer laying unattended and hefted it, then she set off to find Holli.
Holli wasn't very far away, breathing fast and staring wide eyed around her searching for anything she could actually lift to use as a weapon. She counted herself lucky when she found a stick that could double as a staff, she lifted it and breathed a little easier with a weapon in her hands. She fled deeper into the dark halls of the unfinished temple to look for a good place to ambush Viktoria.
Viktoria peered carefully around a corner searching for Holli and her possible attacks. Finding the way clear she stepped down the hallway, looking at the ground she saw disturbed earth marking the passage of her diminutive adversary. She followed these tracks unfailingly, knowing that Holli probably didn't even realize she was making them. Viktoria grinned, knowing she would come upon the little cook. It was only a matter of time.
Holli could hear Victoria's careful pacing coming closer and she silently raised her staff and prepared to strike.
Viktoria stepped around the corner and heard the whistle of a staff coming towards her so she brought her hammer up to block it and locked eyes with the fearful Holli. A long series of blows were exchanged. Holli's longer staff gave her the reach to keep her out of the way of Viktoria's hammer blows but the pitiful stick couldn't stay whole forever, not with Viktoria's strength battering at it, and it snapped in two. Holli stared in horror at the two pieces in her hands, she threw one at Viktoria's head forcing her to duck while Holli hotfooted it away from there and deeper into the temple.
Holli skidded around a corner with Viktoria close on her heels. Holli was met with a several foot drop to a hard stone floor where artisans had been carving out an inner chamber for Discord. She turned, filled with fear, and raised her stick for one last stand now that she had nowhere left to run.
Viktoria turned that corner and saw Holli's predicament. She stalked slowly forward, cautious of what this trapped woman might do.
They were silent as they faced each other for what they knew would be the last time.
Holli took a deep breath, let out a wild battle cry, determined that if she were to die she would do so fighting with all she was worth and charged while swinging her stick wildly.
Viktoria easily deflected and blocked the blows, returning them in kind and forcing Holli back. She kept wielding her hammer and driving Holli towards the drop. She swung her hammer up intending to catch Holli on the chin, hoping to break her neck as painlessly as she could, but Holli leaned back and the swing missed.
But Holli had leaned too far. Her feet, on the edge of the drop, could not regain her balance and she went tumbling over the edge. She barely had time to scream before landing and breaking her neck.
Viktoria looked over the edge at the broken body of her friend and felt a momentary pang of regret for losing the first person who'd treated her as an equal…but it was quickly replaced by the flush of victory as she turned and strode from the unfinished temple to declare herself Head Priestess of the First Temple of Discord.
A/N: See part 2 for an alternate ending! And review both parts! And for those of you who caught 'Madam Saffron', she's from Firefly played by Christina Hendricks.