I'm not sure when the shift occurred, when my obsession for her became something more. Something that took the fire of my rage and quenched it only to build the flames back into a roaring inferno. Even now, with this shift, the obsession for her burns, and my need for revenge remains strong. How can I need her so badly, knowing that all I will do with her once she is mine is kill her like she killed my family.

I think of her and I hear their screams as they died. I hear the screams of the thousands of people who she has left crippled, bleeding, broken, and grieving in her wake. Sometimes the screams of those people, the survivors of the force of nature that is Xena the Warrior Princess, blend together with the screams of the people that I've left in my wake, for it is in her image that I remade myself after the disaster at Cirra, and I too am a force to be reckoned with.

Sometimes I can't tell the difference between the screams of my victims and the screams of hers. But their blood is on her hands as well as mine, for having created me, so I suppose it doesn't matter to whom the screams belong. I've lived and died for her, in pursuit of her, lived again only to be sent back to Tartarus, and made myself immortal just so that I can have my revenge. And even after all of that, despite all my efforts, Xena still emerges triumphant, dominant and I still find myself aching for satisfaction. Not even Ares could give me that, in the end.

I love feeling the thrill of battle, feeling bloodlust rise up in me, see the flames of destruction rage around me, see dead bodies and wounded innocents, see their blood on my sword and feel their blood on my hands, but most of all I love knowing that across the battlefield she is fighting her way to me. I may have an unnatural obsession with the Warrior Princess, but when I want her attention I get it instantly, no ifs, ands, or buts. Nothing could keep her from coming to me if I made it so that she needed to come to me. There are times when just knowing that she will be nearby soon sets my blood on fire. There are times when my sword meets hers and the shockwaves run through my entire body to linger in a place that weakens me even as it strengthens me. As we fight, I can't help but get turned on by the sight of her in full fledged battle. The sheer passion and fury and emotion which she puts into her swordsmanship, the delicate balance between madness and sanity, good and evil, the struggle for dominance; all make my heart beat faster, make adrenaline course through my body, and make it so that when she defeats me I am almost willing to surrender to her, though I will fight tooth and nail for my dominance over her. She has a way of defeating me so utterly that there is hardly a choice in my head as far as surrender. It is only with the sheerest willpower that I manage not to turn to putty in her hands after she has put me in my place. And each time she is loath to kill me, to see to it that I am at an end. Why else would she do so if she did not also need me in a strange way?

We have enough differences to keep my heart racing even when working together, heaven forbid, but my mind and body know that it's the end for me when she turns to me with that knife in her hand, eyes filled with tears for Gabrielle. Oh how I've longed to see her broken like she is at this moment! I've waited for this moment, this moment where for once Xena is dominated by something, and forced to play the part of submissive instead of the dominant for once in her life. And it is in that instant that I realize that she has managed to dominate even that, by stabbing me.

I can't help but smile even as my life's blood pours out of me at the irony. I know that there will be no other chances for me, that I've exhausted all my resources, that I've tried everything that I possibly can try in order to come back, and that this time I die, this time is my last. There will be no more living for me. And even as things go dark I feel the intense need for her that I always have, the heat in the pit of my stomach and reach out to take her face in my hand, caressing it with a gentlness that surprises me. It's the caress of a lover, of familiarity, the caress that I wish I had been able to give her before now, before my last moment. My muscles grow weak and I allow my hand to slide down her body, my fingers entangling themselves in her breastplate as my body falls to the floor and I know no more.

And Xena, Warrior Princess, cries.

A/N: Just a random ficlet I found while reading through some old things of mine...