It had been many months since Xena had sacrificed herself for the 20,000 souls in Japa. Gabrielle had traveled to Amphipolis, Xena's hometown, to place Xena's ashes at the side of her mother and brother, just like she wanted. She then set out to find Eve and tell her of Xena's death. Eve was distraught, but accepted that her mother had to die to save the souls of so many. After leaving Eve to her work preaching the teaching's of Eli, Gabrielle left for Athens. Receiving a message from Eve that she wanted to go preach in Cairo,the capital city in the Land of the Pharoahs, Gabrielle was heading for Corinth now, to meet Eve at the port so she could accompany her to Cairo. Walking down the path through a beautiful wood, Gabrielle now missed Xena more than ever.
"Hey girlie,why don't you give us your dinars? Otherwise things might get nasty..."said the leader of a band of theives blocking her path.
"I don't think so,why don't you get out of my way before I have to hurt you."Gabrielle said,drawing her sai from her boot sheaths.
"Hey,I know you!"one of the thugs said,"Your Gabrielle,the Battling Bard of Potedia,are'nt you?Heard your friend Xena got killed,huh? Well the bitch deserved it!"the thug said.
"Oh,thats it,bring it on!"Gabrielle said.
She rushed the thugs,kicking one in the chest so hard he passed out. Blocking twin blows from two other punk's swords, she then disarmed them and delivered shattering blows to the back's of their heads,knocking them unconscious. The last thug was the one who insulted Xena,and he began to run. Gabrielle drew the chakram and threw it at the back of his foot,so he couldnt run. After hitting the ankle,the chakram bounced against two trees before returing to Gabrielle's hand. She walked towards him.
"Please,dont kill me!"The thug said.
"Oh,I won't unless I have to. Now I'm not stupid. Theives don't normaly have weapons that are adorned with rubies.Now who sent you?"Gabrielle asked him,trying to imitate Xena.
"I....I can't tell you that!"the thug said.
"Well,if this is how it has to be."Gabrielle said.
She then used 'the pinch' on the thug,the pressure point Xena had taught her that shut off the flow of blood to the brain for 30 seconds.
"I've shut off the flow of blood to your brain.Tell me who sent you or you'll die."Gabrielle said,grimacing that she had to be so cruel.
"It was...a...an enemy of the followers of Eli...wanted to prevent you from reaching....Corinth to protect....protect Eve...wanted to kill her."the thug said.
Gabrielle removed the pinch.
"What was his name!"Gabrielle said to the thug,getting stressed because Eve was in danger.
"If I tell you,I'll die!"the thug said.
"I don't have time for this!"Gabrielle yelled,then kicked the man in the face.
Gabrielle ran all the way to the next town,where she bought a horse from the stables. She rode hard the whole way to Corinth, where she spotted Eve talking to a group of people already.
"Gabrielle!"Eve shouted back.
As Eve started to walk towards Gabrielle,dismissing herself from the crowd,Gabrielle spotted a strange man with a crossbow.He was pointing the crossbow at Eve.
"Eve!Duck!"Gabrielle said,and threw the chakram at the man.
Eve dove down,and the chakram knocked the man down.Gabrielle and Eve ran to him.
"Why,my good man,do you want to kill me?"Eve said politely.
"Because you are wanted."the man said.
"Who wants Eve?"Gabrielle said.
"Alti.I have to kill Eve before Alti..."the man said.
He started to shake,then he died.
"Alti killed him.Using her power.I don't know how she's back,but she is.I gotta stop her."Gabrielle said,catching the chakram as it came back.
"No,WE are gonna stop her."Eve said firmly.
Though hesitant about bringing Eve along,what with her being a strict pacifist, she did. Gabrielle and Eve took a cargo ship to the port of Neira, which is just a little while away from Cairo.
"Eve,you need to be careful. Stay with me,and don't make trouble. And keep quiet about Eli."Gabrielle told Eve.
"Gabrielle, dont you treat me like a child!We are the same age,you know!I'm grown up,and I'm smart enough to know how to take care of myself."Eve told her.
Gabrielle smiled, remembering the arguments her and Xena had had about the same thing.
"There she is!Get her!"a man said.
Surprised,Gabrielle ran forward and attacked the mob that had formed.Eve stood back.But somebody grabbed Eve while Gabrielle was distracted,and placed her on an altar that was in the village square,surrounded by guards. The mob had fallen back,and Gabrielle was running towards the altar and Eve.
"Well,there are a few interesting choices here..."a menacing voice said.
"Alti!You whore,let Eve go!It's me you want!"Gabrielle said savagely.
"Oh no it isnt,you little brat. It's her soul.I need it.Now,who to choose?Hmmm?Oh,I'll just go with my favorite!"Alti said laughing.
The guards attacked Gabrielle as Eve and Alti started to glow. Gabrielle threw the chakram,where it broke into two halves,and took out most of the guards.Using her sai's,she turned a guards own sword against him,slashing his leg and incapacitating him.She then grabbed a wooden shaft on the ground and pole-vaulted over the guards.
From Eve's body a white orb,her soul,rose upward into Alti's hands.It then transformed into a ball of flame,and Alti dropped it.From the fireball a body started emerging. It formed the shape of a woman.Blonde hair.Brown eyes.A sword on her back and a dagger at her hip.
"Ah,how I've longed to meet you,Callisto.Welcome back!"Alti said,cackling.
" Hmm....Well well well.Now what am I doing HERE?last thing I remember I was about to be stabbed in the gut by Xena."Callisto said,with her usual lilt of sarcasm.
"Callisto!"Gabrielle yelled,catching the chakram.
"Oh,Gabrielle!How I've missed you!A new chakram,how nice.Oh and you can catch it!HOW CUTE!!!!!"she said,giggling.
"Callisto.Dispose of Gabrielle and the world is yours..."Alti hissed in her ear.
"Gabrielle is not a problem,hag.Where is Xena?"Callisto asked Alti.
"Dead.The self sacrificing Warrior Princess has died.She isnt the problem anymore.KILL GABRIELLE!"Alti said.
"Xena....dead?Well,that changes a lot.And you,my dear old woman,are bothering me."Callisto said,drawing her dagger.
Before Alti could react,Callisto plunged her dagger in Alti's gut. Alti screamed, and faded into nothingness.
"Now....Gabrielle.Is Xena really dead?Come on,dear,you can tell me.We're old friends!"Callisto said,smiling.
"Yes,she's dead.And you went to hell,Callisto.Xena saved you,and made you an angel.You were reincarnated into the body of Xena's daughter,Eve.She's behind you.She's a messenger of peace."Gabrielle told her.
"Xena is gone?And I was her daughter....now Gabby,this brings up an interesting point.What am I to do now?"Callisto said,laughing.
Suddenly,Eve got up.She grabbed Callisto from behind and a yellow light surrounded them.Eve was showing Callisto,and making her feel,all the pain she caused in life.At the same time,Eve showed her all the good she did as an angel,and how good she made people feel.Callisto fell to the ground,shattered.
"I...I..I didnt.SHE DID IT!XENA MADE ME!"Callisto screamed.
"No Callisto.Mother didnt do anything.Its time you took responsibility for your actions."Eve told her firmly.
"Your right,messenger.Your right.Gabrielle.....I understand now.What you told me when we met.What Xena was trying to do when she wanted to free me,and spared me all those times.Xena raised me,indirectly....I have to honor her memory and make amends.A new Callisto is born today.With a new purpose in life.....to erase all the evil I've done."Callisto said,crying.
"Welcome Callisto.This is the true you.You can feel the emptiness inside you leave slightly,can't you?Every time you do good it will recede a little more.Go with Gabrielle,Callisto,she can help."Eve said,taking Callisto into her arms and comforting her.
"She hates me..."Callisto stammered.
"I hated the old Callisto.Before the angel.Before this Callisto.Come with me.We can honour Xena...together."Gabrielle told her.
"Together..."Callisto said,and smiled.
Gabrielle and Callisto,after leaving Cairo,had left Eve to her work in the Land of the Pharoahs and went back to Greece.They were now camped outside of Amphipolis,Xena's hometown.
"Gabby...Why exactly are we here?"Callisto asked.
"Callisto,we're here because you have to apologize to these people.You kept them hostage and threatened to burn them.The road to redemption isnt easy,you know....dont expect too much."Gabrielle told her.
In fact,Gabrielle was worried.Though Callisto was a warrior for good now,her ways of going about it were strange to say the least.Many times Gabrielle would have to stop her from beating even a petty thief senseless.Not to mention her strange way of doing things,period.Almost every morning Gabrielle would wake up,see Callisto,and jump.For years Callisto had been a fearsome enemy,and had killed her husband....it was going to take some getting used to having her around.
"Gabs,lets go into Amphipolis.I cant wait to see there expressions when they see me!"Callisto said,and giggled.
She is so weird!Gabrielle thought.And she was always calling her 'Gabs' or 'Gabby',much like Joxer used to.
"Callisto,this isnt going to be fun."Gabrielle said,trying to make her focus.
"I know,I know.Still...maybe I could pound some bad guys and make the people love me!"Callisto said,then froze
Gabrielle froze too.They were hearing sounds in the woods,sounds a normal person would never hear.But they were trained warriors.At the same time,Gabrielle threw the chakram into the woods and Callisto threw her dagger.Seconds later,the dagger and chakram came flying back towards them.
Callisto caught the chakram and Gabrielle caught the dagger.Someone was walking out of the woods.Carrying a broken shield.Tall and dark...they knew instantly who it was.
"Ares."Gabrielle and Callisto said with contempt.
"Your still my favorite blondes!Welcome back,CALLISTO!"He said her name with contempt.
"You are so lucky you had that shield Ares...or my chakram would have removed your head.It would have come right back...but what a lovely thought anyway,right Callisto?"Gabrielle said.
"That shield was a gift from the warlord Thamanes.You broke it.Now you'll pay...but not right now.I have a little task for you."Ares said,suddenly getting really serious.
"Listen tall,dark,and stupid!We want NOTHING TO DO WITH YOU!"Callisto yelled.
"Hmm....Even if it meant preventing Dahaks return into the world?"Ares said.
"Dahak...."Gabrielle shivered at the name.
"Dahak...that third rate excuse for a god could be trouble."Callisto said.
"Then why are you here?Should'nt you be hiding right now?"Gabrielle said.
"Believe it or not...I'm here to help!"Ares said,and smiled.
"Your lying,Ares!"Gabrielle said,then jumped and kicked him down.
Ares got up.The look in his eyes was dangerous,and Callisto was ready to draw her sword anytime to pound him.
"Listen,little girl.Dahak's return to the world is no joke.I have proof.Wanna see it?"Ares said,standing very close to Gabrielle in an attempt to intimidate her.
"Ok then.Let's see your little proof,Ares.Then can I whoop his a-"
"Ok.Let's see it."Gabrielle said,cutting Callisto off.
Ares waved his hand in the air.A window opened,and quickly became focused.They saw people,hundreds of people,wearing Dahak's symbol.They were chanting his name and building a temple.Or re-building.
"Huh.Should be no problem,we'll just go in there,wipe em out,and be back in time for my debut in Amphimpolis!"Callisto said,smiling.
"Ares....where is that?"Gabrielle said,sounding shaken.
"Yes Gabrielle.It's in Britania."he told her,sounding solemn.
"NO!!!"She screamed,and took off into the woods.
"Britania?Where Hope was born?"Callisto said,confused.
"Callisto,Hope is back.That is the first part of Dahak's return in the world..Hope will pave the way."Ares told her.
Callisto stood up.She then ran towards Ares and flipped over him.While in mid-air,she kicked him in the back of the head.He fell.
"Ares,if you have anything to do with this.ANYTHING!"Callisto screamed,"Then I will personaly kill you.Hind's blood..Cronus's bones..there's a few ways.DONT MESS WITH US!".
"Your forgetting something,Callisto.You were once one of Dahak's allies as well."Ares said,then disapeared.
Callisto just stood there.She was angry,and confused,and worried about Gabrielle.Callisto grabbed the chakram and ran in the direction Gabrielle went.She heard crying,and peered through the dense woods to see Gabrielle sitting by a stream.Tears were flowing from her eyes.Callisto decided to watch her a while,and see what was wrong.
"Xena....I'm not doing so good without you.I need you.Hope is back,I can feel it.What am I supposed to do?She's my daughter...I can't kill her again.Callisto is here,dont worry,I'll be fine,but we need you.Where are you Xena?"Gabrielle sobbed.
Callisto then walked out of the woods.She sat down beside Gabrielle.
"Gabby...we're gonna need a little help to take out Dahak's followers.Who can we rely on?"Callisto asked her.
"I don't want the Amazons involved.They're out of the picture."Gabrielle said.
"How about Hercules?"Callisto asked.
"No one knows where he is.And we don't have the time to find him."Gabrielle said.
"It's up to us,Gabs.We have to do this.And I dont know how to say this,but...we have to take out Hope.As long as she's still around,Dahak's still a threat to the world."Callisto said,looking Gabrielle in the eye.
"I can't kill her again,Callisto.Not again."Gabrielle sobbed.
"I understand.I'll do it.Let's go to port.We're sailing for Britania."Callisto told her.
They set sail for Britania.On the way,Callisto was trying to teach Gabrielle basic flips and acrobatics.Gabrielle could do the "Xena" flips as long as she took off from something,like a staff.
"Come on..you can do it."Callisto encouraged.
Callisto had urged Gabrielle to try the flip without the staff.Last time she did that,Gabrielle had sprung her ankle.
"Ok."Gabrielle said,trying to sound sure of herself.
Gabrielle ran,and tried the flip.She turned only half way in the air,however,and landed on her butt.
"Um..heh..heh..good try..HAHAHAH!"Callisto said,trying to conceal her laughter but giving up.
"Mmm,thanks a lot.I really need for you to be laughing at me now."Gabrielle said,but then started to laugh herself.
They reached Britania,and started for the site of the temple.Gabrielle filled in Callisto on all the things that had gone on there before,so Callisto was'nt exactly thrilled at going either.It was getting dark,so they decided they should make camp.
"Callisto,could you go collect some wood?I'm gonna make rabbit stew tonight!"Gabrielle said.
"YES!I'll be right back!"Callisto giggled,then took off in the woods.
Callisto was gathering firewood,when she sensed a presance around her.Not Gabrielle's,she was sure of that.Callisto drew her sword,to prepare for whatever was about to happen.She heard a twig crack.She swung around to see...Hope.She was dressed like Gabrielle used to dress,with a green top and skirt.She had an Amazon staff,just like Gabrielle's old one.Hope walked toward a stunned Callisto.
"Callisto...I'm glad your here.Now you can help me and father conquer the world."Hope said.
"Is that so?Well Hope,dear,your SADLY MISTAKEN!"Callisto yelled.
Callisto grabbed Hope by the throat,and pinned her to a tree.Hope's feet were actualy dangling inches from the ground.
"Stupid fool.Let me show you something."Hope said.
Suddenly,Callisto and Hope were in a temple.Hundreds of people wearing robes with Dahak's symbol on them were milling about,doing work.Just like Ares had shown them.
"Callisto,your on the losing side.How are just you and Mommy dearest going to defeat all of us?"Hope said,looking serious.
Callisto turned away from Hope,looking at all the people doing his bidding.She started smiling.Laughing.Hope smiled as well.
"See Callisto?Once we rule the world,we will have everything!"Hope said.
"Thats not why I'm laughing.."Callisto said,turning towards Hope once more.
"Then why?"Hope said.
"Because your all sheep.And that would make me and Gabby the wolves!"Callisto screamed,unleashed her warcry and backhanded Hope.They were suddenly back in the woods.
"I warned you.There is no turning back."Hope said,choking.
"Oh I would'nt have it any other way."Callisto said,squeezing tighter.
Hope waved her arm at Callisto,sending her flying into a tree.She then disapeared.
"Psh.That little spawn of a third rate god is gonna pay for that.I HATE when I get thrown against trees."Callisto said.
She gathered the firewood and returned to the campsite.Gabrielle built a fire and began cooking the stew.While they were eating,they talked about how they were gonna stop Hope and Dahak's follower's.
"Well,last time Xena and I were here,the village folk were against Dahak's minions.So maybe we could get the local militia to help us against there main force.As for Hope..."Gabrielle said,trailing off.
"I'll take care of Hope,dont worry.I understand that you don't want to kill her Gabrielle,but it has to be done.It has to be."Callisto said.
"I know.Let's get some sleep,ok?"Gabrielle told her,yawning.
"All right.See you in the morning.Goodnight."Callisto said,laying down on her bedroll next to the fire.
"Goodnight Callisto."Gabrielle said,also lieing down.
The next morning,Callisto and Gabrielle started towards the village.They had to make the local militia understand that they needed their help.When they arrived at the village,Gabrielle took Callisto aside.
"Callisto...we may have to improvise."She told her.
"What do you mean?Like,do we need to change their antatomy to change their minds?"Callisto said with glee.
"No,we have to make them believe.Just follow my lead."Gabrielle said,smiling.
They walked into the leader of the militia's building,where he was drinking on the job.He looked horrible.
"My name is Gabrielle.This is my friend,Callisto.The whole world is in danger,sir.But right now,your village is in the most danger.Dahak's army is gonna ride against this village.Act now,and give us command of your militia,and we can save them."Gabrielle told him.
"Do you really expect me to believe this?Two people,WOMEN no less,come in here and tell me to give them command of my militia?What reason do I have to trust you?"the leader of the militia said.
"Well,my name is Gabrielle.As in "Xena and Gabrielle."She said,looking him in the eye.
"Oh,and I'm Callisto.As in Warrior Queen.As in I'm going to SHOVE BURNING SPLINTERS UNDER YOUR FINGERNAILS UNLESS YOU DO AS WE SAY!"Callisto yelled.
Now he was scared.He turned control of the militia over to Callisto and Gabrielle,then left to begin evacuating villagers.
"Now,Gabrielle.Take the main force of the militia to the temple.Take out as many followers as you can,while trying to destroy the temple.I'm going to the temple too,but alone.I'll take care of Hope...."Callisto said,trailing off.
"Be careful,my friend.I'll see you at the temple."Gabrielle said.
"Listen,this is dangerous.So lets make a promise.If either of us dont...come back..from this mission,the other carries on our work for the greater good."Callisto said,her voice shaking.
"It's a deal.And don't worry,I'm coming back."Gabrielle reasurred her.
Gabrielle went to rally the troops,while Callisto set out for the temple.She arrived,but hesitated.Their were formidable-looking guards posted at every entrance.She couldnt take them on directly,or they would expect Gabrielle and the militia's attack.She threw a rock around the corner of the temple,and the guards went to go inspect the sound.She quickly ran into the temple.
"It's basic,but you gotta start somewhere."Callisto muttered to herself.
She easily avoided the guards inside the temple,and made her way into what looked like the commanders room.There was only one guard by the door.She supposed that they figured no one would be able to get past all the other security.She walked into plain view of the guard.
"Hey baby.Why don't you and me go and worship Dahak the most,uh,pleasurable,way..."Callisto said,trying to sound sexy and alluring.
"Anything to serve my god!"The guard said.
He walked toward Callisto with lust in his eyes.Just as he reached out his hand to grab her,she kicked incredibly high and hit him in the chin,knocking him down.She then knelt down.
"Was it good for you too?"She said,smiling.She then punched him,knocking him out.
Callisto walked in the door,and saw her.Hope.She was twirling her staff,preparing to fight.
"Oh Hope.Auntie Callisto wants you to put that staff down NOW!"Callisto said,drawing her sword.
They began to fight.Hope was obviously using her powers to put more force behind her blows.They both delivered strong kicks,knocking each other to opposite sides of the room.Then they heard the sounds of battle outside.
"Heeheehee...thats your mom and the militia.And by the sounds of it,yes!She's winning!"Callisto said with joy.
"She'll never win.Mother wont win!"Hope cried.
Hope then abandoned physical fighting.She used her powers to toss Callisto around,throwing her against walls.Then,she tossed her THROUGH a wall.Callisto layed there,she was too weak to move.
"You won't be bothering me any more,Callisto."Hope said,and drew a dagger from her boot.
Hope raised the dagger high,preparing to plunge it into Callisto's chest.Suddenly,she was on the ground as well.Someone had kicked her from behind.
It was Gabrielle.She stood there,with a bloody sword in hand,and a disbelieving look on her face.But Gabrielle coud'nt do it.She could'nt kill Hope.Hope used this moment of indecision to fling Gabrielle away.
"Fool.You should have killed me when you had the chance!"Hope said.
She got up,and aproached Gabrielle.The bard just layed there,accepting that if she could'nt kill Hope,then Hope would kill her.Just as Hope was going to kill Gabrielle,a lightning bolt struck her down.
Callisto stumbled over,kneeling next to Gabrielle.
"Did he do that?"Callisto said.
Ares then waved a hand over Hope,and she disapeared.
"Maybe some time in Tartuarus will make her understand that no one messes with the God of War.Or his babes."Ares said,grinning.
"Dream on."Gabrielle and Callisto said.
Callisto and Gabrielle left Britania for Greece.
"Where to now?"Gabrielle asked Callisto.
"I..I..I want to visit Cirra.My old hometown.I want to say goodbye to my family."Callisto told her.
"I understand.When we get to Greece we'll head straight for Cirra."Gabrielle said,putting her hand on Callisto's shoulder.
Gabrielle and Callisto stood at opposite ends of a grassy field. Suddenly, Gabrielle hurled the chakram at Callisto. It whizzed through the air. Callisto caught the chakram and immediatly threw it back at Gabrielle. Laughing, Gabrielle caught it then threw it way to the left of Callisto. Callisto ran for it, then did an amazing flip and caught it. Gabrielle ran towards her.
"Good catch!" Gabrielle said, clearly having fun.
"Thanks Gabs! What do you call this game again?" Callisto said smiling.
"I call it Fris..." Gabrielle began, but was cut off.
A woman had entered the field. It was Eve!
"Gabrielle! Callisto!"Eve yelled, waving.
"Evie!"Gabrielle yelled, and ran towards her.
They embraced, and Callisto came over. Then Eve and Callisto hugged.
"It's been awhile. How are you Eve?" Callisto said.
"I'm fine! Great, actualy. And how are you girls? What have you been up to?" Eve said smiling her peaceful smile.
"Well, Gabs invented this game...." Callisto said.
Now they were standing at three ends of the field, Callisto had the chakram. She split it in two halves and threw one half at Gabrielle and one half at Eve. They both caught it, threw the pieces towards the middle of the field, and they combined. Then all three of the women ran towards the chakram, which was still in flight, and attempted to catch the weapon. Gabrielle got it.
"I win, I win!!!!" Gabrielle yelled.
They set up camp and began to talk around the fire. Eve told about her travels in the East, then Gabrielle and Callisto told of their recent adventures.
"Well, where to now? I was thinking of joining you for awhile." Eve said.
"We're heading to Cirra. My old hometown. I....have to say goodbye."Callisto said.
They decided to head to Cirra first thing in the morning, and turned in for the night.
When the girls woke up the next morning, they prepared for their trip to Cirra. Eve took Callisto aside.
"Callisto.....this is going to be painful. I know from experience. A few years ago, when I was still Livia, I went to the village I had been raised in. The villagers had heard of what I was doing as Rome's Champion. They almost stoned me to death."Eve told her.
"What did you do?" Callisto said.
"I...burned the village and crucified every living thing."Eve replied, looking down at her feet.
The girls separated with Eve, temporarily, the next morning. Callisto decided to head to Cirra alone at first, while Gabrielle went to investigate the presence of a warlord that could be a threat.
Callisto crested the last hill that led to Cirra and looked down upon the place where her village had once stood. It had been years since shed seen this place, and now she wondered if shed been wise to come back.
All the painful memories of the terrible day shed lost her parents and sister came flooding back to her now with unexpected intensity. It was so easy for her to feel the heat from the flames themselves still warming her skin to uncomfortable levels. She could smell the burning flesh of the villagers shed grown up loving.
She could still hear her mother and sisters screams as they died in the collapsed bard. The image of her father being run through by one of Xenas soldiers was eternally burned into her minds eye. She would never forget
Shed once sworn shed never forgive either, yet she had done that very same thing. Or had she?
Callisto could feel the old hate and anger begin to burn in her heart again. It was a tiny seed right now, but she knew that if she didnt get away from this place it would blossom and grow until it consumed her heart and destroyed all the good that had been done since she and Xena had forgiven one another in Heaven.
Ares watched as Callisto looked down upon her home valleyor should he say the ruins of her home valley? There was nothing here but charred remains. In the thirty six years since the village had been raided by Xenas army no one had considered this dry land worth restoring.
No one had taken the time to rebuild Cirra.
Now Callisto was back. Shed faced unimaginable obstacles and shed overcome them all. Even death itself. No other warrior, not even Xena, had accomplished all this blond beauty had managed to do.
Xena was dead, but Callisto was alive. He could do something with that, given the time and the right words.
The god of war could see the pain and anger beginning to flare up in the former killers eyes. He now had the fuel to add to the everlasting fire that burned within her soul. All he had to do was push a few buttons
Callisto turned away from the ruins so Ares appeared, making himself known.
Not you again Ares. Im not going to join you. I fight for good now.
Though her words were heroic, her voice only sounded tired and weak. Callisto knew what Ares was here to offer her, and she was determined not to fall back into her old ways. Gabrielle had shown here there was a better way to live.
There was a better way for her to spend her time. She didnt have to hate. Xena and Gabrielles love and forgiveness had shown her that. She liked the way love made her feel. It was comforting in a way that nothing else was. There was no guilt associated with love.
I saw the fire rekindle in your eyes Callisto. Im a god. I know the truth, even when you mortals deny it to yourselves. You hate what happened here.
Callisto nodded. What he said was true, of course. I do hate what happened here, but that doesnt mean Im going to fly into a rage and start killing innocent people again Ares. Now out of my way.
Callisto kicked her horse into a run and nearly bowled the god of war over. He barely had time to fade out of the way before he would have been trampled by the beast.
His own anger flared and the result was a crack of thunder in the sky. He would not be denied by a simple mortal!
He called to her but she kept riding. Well, if he couldnt have her on her own terms, then he would take her on his. He held out a hand toward her and a black cloud descended upon her.
Callisto brought her horse to a stop as the cloud engulfed her. The effect of his spell began to evidence itself in her eyes in the form of an ugly green light.
She could feel something happening to her physically. It was like something was eating away at her soul. Aresshe thought. She turned her horse back around faced him as unbelievable anger welled up in her chest.
She wanted-no-she needed to hurt someone or something. A rage like shed never known before, even in her most heated moments of battle against Xena, filled her chest with white-hot heat. If she didnt kill she would be driven mad with blood-lust.
Callisto gave her old battle cry and charged Ares. When she was close she flipped from her horse and landed before him, drawing her sword.
They met in a heated battle, and as she fought, some of the pain of Ares spell eased. It was in this passionate battle that she felt at least a small measure of comfort. She knew in her heart, if not in her mind, that she would kill anyone or anything that got in her way to ease the pain his spell was putting her through.
In effect, Ares had made her his puppet.
Callisto ran her sword through his gut and Ares laughed. As she felt her sword slice through his immortal flesh the pain came to a stop.
Feel the peace that killing can bring Callisto?
What have you done to me Ares?
Ive made you the warrior you were destined to be. Nowcome back to me. We will rule the world supreme.
I wont do it! I wont go back to that life!
She withdrew her sword and the pain of a thousand bees stinging her heart brought the mighty woman to her knees. The effect of the pain? Anger. Rage. Hatred. Only killing felt good. Only killing would ease her suffering.
Take it off me!
He laughed and knelt down before her. Ares grabbed a handful of Callistos hair and jerked her head back. Never. Youre mine now. As soon as I know youre with me because you want to be, Ill take the spell off. But until then
His lips met her in an unwanted kiss before he faded away to leave Callisto screaming in her pain. She would kill again, she knew, unless she did something to erase the spell Ares had put on her.