Author: Kat Lee
Fandom: Xena, Warrior Princess
Challenge/Prompt: tv_universe: Quotable: The Return: "When you reach the end of your rope, tie a knot in it and hang on." - Franklin D. Roosevelt
Word Count: 287
Date Written: 7 March 2017
Disclaimer: All characters within belong to their rightful owners, not the author, and are used without permission.
Gabrielle's muscles are trembling as Xena finally finishes pulling her up. Xena throws the knotted rope to the side, grabs Gabrielle, and holds her, rocking them both back and forth, brushing her blonde hair, and kissing her head. "For a moment," she whispers into her younger lover's ear, "I was afraid you were going to let go."
Gabrielle casts a glance at the thin rope. It was all Xena had had to work with at the time, and they were lucky to have had that. She nestles her face into Xena's armored breasts. Her heart is beating so fast and hard that Gabby can hear its pounding through her armor. She brushes her lips across that place in her breastplate and whispers back an admission of her own, "I wasn't trying to hold on to the rope."
"Hear me out, Xena," she says, raising her head to gaze up into her scared, blue eyes. She's only ever seen Xena afraid of one thing and that is of losing some one she loves. That fear has never shown more brightly than it does in this very instant. "I wasn't holding to the rope. I was," she admits, "but only physically. That thing normally wouldn't have held me." She shakes her head but then stops, still gazing into her heroine's eyes. "I was holding on to you. I knew you'd save me."
"That," Xena vows, catching her face in her hands, "or die with you." She presses a hot kiss of passion, love, and relief to the bard's lips, neither realizing in the moment just how prophetic her words will one day prove. They only know they have each other and love each other, and that is always enough.