Disclaimer: This is just a little "Just Because" piece that I thought up. Xena and Gabrielle don't belong to me and neither does the Amazon Barbicus, (used with permission courtesy of the Might Lu Bu). I make no money from this, but if Matel suddenly comes out with a new Barbie wearing beads and doeskin, I'll know why!

Just Because

"Oh Gabrielle, I got you something?"

The bard's eyes lit up. "Really, what it is?"

Xena smiled and handed over a small package wrapped in brown paper and tied with a piece of twine. Gabrielle eagerly tore open the paper, and then wrinkled her nose as she studied what she found.

"What's what is this, Xena. Some kinda doll?"

"It's an Amazon Barbicus.. it's the newest rage in Athens!"

Gabrielle picked up the doll, turning it over in her hand and examining it closely. She then wrapped it back up into it's paper wrapping and threw it into the fire.

Xena jumped up, surprised and a little upset at the way that Gabrielle had so carelessly discarded her gift. "Hey! What did you do that for? That cost me 4 dinars!"

Gabrielle shrugged. "It was a fake.. the knees didn't even bend. Everyone knows that a real Barbicus has bendable knees."

Xena crossed her arms in a little pout.

"Ah, come on Xena. Why do we need a doll for anyways... after all you have the real thing."

The warrior raised a curious eyebrow.

"If it makes it any better, I got you a little something too."

"Oh?" Xena asked, per interest suddenly peeked.

"Hmmm...yep. I got you a new water skin. It's doeskin, isn't it soft?"

Xena sat back down next to her bard. She and examined the gift and stroked it gently. Yeah...soft..." the warrior purred into the bard's ear.

"Soft..." Gabrielle repeated, giggling as the warrior's lips tickled her ear.

Xena's lips trailed from the bard's ear and began to lightly pepper her neckline with gentle kisses. Gabrielle tilted her neck gently, allowing the warrior better access to it.

"I'm glad you like my present," Gabrielle quietly commented.

"Hmmm..." Xena agreed, her hand falling to the bard's thigh and running up, coming in contact with the soft doeskin that made up her skirt. "There is nothing like the feel of soft doeskin."

The warrior then casually tossed the water skin over her shoulder and into the fire next to the burning remains of the doll. Gabrielle's eyes suddenly flashed with anger when she saw the what the warrior had done.

"Xena, we could have used that," she scolded.

The warrior merely shrugged, as she continued the line of kisses down Gabrielle's collar bone and over the strap of her doeskin top. "What do I need that for... when I have the real thing?"

"You owe me six dinar for a new water skin now."

"Then you owe me four. I guess that means that I'm in your debt then," Xena replied. "I wonder if you'll let me work it off."

"Hmmm.. maybe. Hey Xena, you think we could get Salmoneus to market a Warrior Princess doll?

Xena suddenly pulled back, raising an eyebrow once again.

"Course the bendable knees could be an option on that one," the bard teased.

Xena rolled her eyes, before returning her attention to the softness of the bard's doeskin top.