The Greater Good


TEASER

Gabrielle swings her staff at Argo.

GABRIELLE
Hah! Hmm? Wanna try it again? Okay. Hah!

Xena whistles.

GABRIELLE
Uh-oh.

Argo kicks Gabrielle's staff and Xena catches it

GABRIELLE
I hate it when you do that. I have to practice.

XENA
Not on my horse.

Xena gives Gabrielle back her staff.

XENA
I wish the two of you would just get along.

GABRIELLE
It's not like we're at constant war or anything.
Argo doesn't like me.

XENA
Sometimes you have to have patience with
things that annoy you.

GABRIELLE
Oh, I never said she annoyed me.

XENA
I wasn't talking to you.

GABRIELLE
Oh, funny. Very, very funny.

XENA
There's a road on the other side of those trees.
I'll meet you there. Bring Argo.

GABRIELLE
You go on. We'll catch up.

XENA
(to Argo) Be nice. (to Gabrielle) Make sure the
saddle's tight.

Xena runs off.

GABRIELLE
Make sure the saddle's tight? Hmm.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Xena runs to a well and draws some water.

PHOTIS
Hey! Are you Xena?

XENA
Yes.

PHOTIS
Thank the gods.

She burps.

PHOTIS
Sorry. Talmadeus is trying to take Lord Seltzer.
He's attacking the factory. You have to save him.

XENA
Calm down. Who's Lord Seltzer?

PHOTIS
He's the most wonderful, giving, unselfish man
the gods ever sent to our valley.

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Gabrielle puts her foot in the stirrup.

GABRIELLE
Hey, this is good. See, I knew we could get along.

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Well.

PHOTIS
Please.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Gabrielle starts to mount.

GABRIELLE
Xena will be so surprised.

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Xena whistles.

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Argo suddenly runs, throwing Gabrielle.

GABRIELLE
You stupid, conniving, four-foot daughter
of a...mare.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Well.

XENA
All right.

Xena mounts Argo and rides off.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Ness drags out Salmoneus who has a bag on his head.

NESS
We have him! Talmadeus will reward us all tonight.
You see, he wanted your head by nightfall. It's
gonna be the centerpiece on his dinner table.

Ness removes bag.

SALMONEUS
Wouldn't he like a nice bunch of flowers, instead?
Orchids are lovely this time of year. And I look
terrible with an apple in my mouth.

NESS
Burn it down!

Xena's chakram breaks the arrows.

NESS
Swords!

Xena's chakram breaks the swords. Xena rides
in and flips off Argo with a yell.

SALMONEUS
Xena!

Xena fights the men.

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Callisto fits a dart in a crossbow. Her face is never seen in any of the shots.

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Xena battles. Ness grabs Salmoneus during the fight.

SALMONEUS
Oh, Xena! A little help here!

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Callisto jumps on a tree branch.

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Xena fights.

SALMONEUS
Important person being kidnapped! Hello!

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Callisto aims.

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Xena whistles and Argo kicks Ness. Xena continues to battle and wins. The men retreat and Xena runs after them.

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Callisto fires and the dart flies and hits Xena in the neck. She draws her chakram and searches the area with blurry vision. She pulls out the dart and smells it.

END OF TEASER



ACT ONE

Xena tastes the poison on the dart and then spits it out. She hides the dart in her gauntlet and joins Gabrielle. Salmoneus talks to some villagers in the background.

SALMONEUS
To make this work, we have orders for this water.
We need back-up-

GABRIELLE
You know what this is? It's water. Fizzy water.
He's making money selling water.

XENA
Salmoneus!

Salmoneus joins them.

SALMONEUS
Ix-nay on the Almoneus-Say. Here, I'm known
as Lord Seltzer.

XENA
Salmoneus.

SALMONEUS
Shh!

XENA
Why is Talmadeus after you?

SALMONEUS
He's after my secret elixir. You see, when I came
to this town, the people had no zip, no energy.
I mean, let's face it, their get up and go just kind
of lay there and ptthhht! But after my magic elixir,
they felt better. Productivity went up, living
conditions improved.

XENA
What did you sell to Talmadeus?

SALMONEUS
Me? I never sold...I...all right, one little transaction.
I--I--I sold him some, ah (clears throat) talcamite
swords and belt buckles.

GABRIELLE
What's talcamite?

XENA
It looks and feels like metal, until it gets wet and
then it dissolves.

SALMONEUS
Well, how did I know it was gonna rain on the big
battle?! Anyway, the swords and belt buckles melted.

GABRIELLE
One big, naked defeat?

SALMONEUS
It wasn't pretty. He's not gonna stop until he has
me drawn and quartered. You've gotta get me
out of here, please.

XENA
We're not leaving these people at the mercy of
Talmadeus; he'll kill them all.

SALMONEUS
Xena, please.

Gorney drops a barrel and the cork shoots out and hits Salmoneus.

SALMONEUS
Oww! Gorney! Watch that water pressure, will
ya?! If you want something done right, you gotta
buy the right people.

Salmoneus leaves.

GABRIELLE
How does he manage to do that? Stay alive. He
must have a guardian Moray or something. Okay,
so, what's the plan?

XENA
The plan is to make Talmadeus realize what
he's up against.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Talmadeus' camp.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Talmadeus' tent. Talmadeus arm wrestles over hot coals.

NESS
Lord Talmadeus.

TALMADEUS
Where is Salmoneus?

NESS
We had him at his factory when this--this woman
showed up. She fought with the strength of Ares
and the speed of Hermes.

TALMADEUS
Xena!

Talmadeus wins the arm wrestle and the other man's hand is pressed against the coals. He screams and exits.

TALMADEUS
Ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha. I must have Salmoneus.

NESS
Is that wise? I mean, with Xena in the picture.
What if she wants Salmoneus, too?

TALMADEUS
This man's blood is mine, not Xena's. He made
defeat out of certain victory, he made a fool of
my army; he made a fool of me! If I have to go
through a dozen Xena's to get my hands on his
scrawny neck, I will!

Talmadeus throws an ax at a picture of Salmoneus.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Valley.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Talmadeus and his men move along. Xena steps out of a bush and follows behind, joining the line. Gabrielle watches from the bushes with a smile.

NESS
Stay in formation! Keep your eyes open!

EXTRA
Yes, sir.

Ness sees Xena who waves at him. He yells and charges through the men to Xena, who kicks him off his horse. Gabrielle cheers.

TALMADEUS
Xena!

Xena moves through the line of men, with a yell and spinning with her arms held out. She knocks them all out. Xena battles Talmadeus, but the poison starts to affect her. She's knocked to the ground and holds her neck.

GABRIELLE
Something's wrong.

Xena tries to battle Talmadeus, but he knocks her to the ground once more.

GABRIELLE
What's happening?

Xena looks at Talmadeus, her vision blurring. Talmadeus holds up his sword. Gabrielle jumps to her feet.

GABRIELLE
No!

TALMADEUS
I'm the man who killed Xena!

Gabrielle throws her staff which knocks the sword from Talmadeus' hand. Xena kicks him and whistles. Argo enters and Xena tries to mount her, but she can do no more then grab the saddle. Gabrielle grabs the saddle on the other side.

GABRIELLE
Okay.

XENA
Go, Argo.

GABRIELLE
Go! Go! Go!

They ride off.

TALMADEUS
Did you see that? I had her. I had her.

NESS
Maybe it's a trap.

TALMADEUS
No, I saw the fear in her eyes. She's runnin' for
her life.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Village.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Factory. Gabrielle helps Xena out of her armour.

GABRIELLE
This was really a stupid time to try to keep
something from me.

XENA
I didn't know how much talmic poison was on
the dart.

GABRIELLE
It doesn't matter. If there was even a chance of
your being sick, you should've told me. You could've
gotten killed!

XENA
Gabrielle...yell at me later.

GABRIELLE
How bad is it?

XENA
I still don't know. My legs are almost useless.
I can't feel my feet. My arms'll probably go next.

GABRIELLE
You're gonna pull through, right? I mean it's not...

XENA
It's gonna get worse before it gets better.

Salmoneus enters.

SALMONEUS
Okay, I've been thinking about things and I've
made some decisions.

GABRIELLE
You have?

SALMONEUS
Yes. Somebody has to take charge. Someone
has to have the initiative to get us out of this
mess. Somebody has to take command. Now...any
ideas where we can find this person, huh?

GABRIELLE
We've got the person. Xena's gonna be all right.

SALMONEUS
Yeah, I know that, you know that, but, Talmadeus
has a different slant on the thing. He thinks you
are, well, the way you are.

XENA
Then, we'll just have to convince him that I'm okay.

SALMONEUS
Uh-huh and you propose to do that exactly how?

Xena looks at Gabrielle and then Salmoneus does.

GABRIELLE
Oh, no.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Gabrielle dresses in Xena's armour. She turns to face Xena and Salmoneus, fully clothed in leather and breastplates. Her hair is dyed black.

GABRIELLE
So, what do you think?

The breastplate falls. Gabrielle laughs.

END OF ACT ONE



ACT TWO

GABRIELLE
Okay, so it's a little big. Uh, well, tighten it for me.

Salmoneus moves to help Gabrielle.

XENA
Talmadeus is sure to attack us and when he
does, we'll be ready. When Gabrielle makes her
appearance as me, it should be enough.

GABRIELLE
So, I just stand there and I--I wave this fake
chakram and give that yell-thingy of yours.

SALMONEUS
And can you give that yell-thingy?

GABRIELLE
Ay-yi-yi-yi-yi-yi-yi.

SALMONEUS
This is not gonna fool Talmadeus.

Salmoneus tightens the breastplate.

GABRIELLE
Ay-yi-yi-yi-yi-yi-yi!

SALMONEUS
See, now that could work!

XENA
Salmoneus, go round up your workers, we don't
have much time.

SALMONEUS
Done.

Salmoneus leaves.

XENA
Come here. Now, Gabrielle, listen carefully. Now,
I know you've been in battles before, but this one
is different. I want you riding in and out of there quickly.

GABRIELLE
Riding? That would mean Argo. No, she doesn't
like me.

Xena puts her sword in the scabbard on Gabrielle's back.

XENA
She doesn't hate you. I thought you had a pony
when you were young.

GABRIELLE
I did. His name was Tympani.

XENA
Did you leave Tympani with your sister?

GABRIELLE
No, actually he got very sick one day and why - I
thought he would get better, but it's just what
happens with things that you love. Sometimes
they just leave you.

Xena puts a hand on Gabrielle's shoulder.

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Gabrielle exits the factory. Argo whinnies.

GABRIELLE
Yes, it's me. Now look. We have to call a truce,
okay? All right, now you, stand back. The gallop whistle.

Gabrielle whistles and Argo lies down.

GABRIELLE
Argo!

SALMONEUS
Yeah, see, I must have a different definition for
the word, uh, gallop. I thought the whistle was this.

He whistles and Argo gets to her feet.

GABRIELLE
Whoa!

A bird whistles and Argo rides off with Gabrielle.

GABRIELLE
Whoa! Whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa.

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Ness and Talmadeus' men walk along.

KALUS
How certain are we that Xena isn't going to interfere?

NESS
Ah! You saw what happened. Talmadeus defeated
her. Hah-hah! She's probably half-way to Athens
by now.

Gabrielle gives a yell.

KALUS
What's that noise?

Gabrielle rides in.

GABRIELLE
Ha! Thought you'd come back for some more,
did you?

KALUS
Does she seem smaller than before?

GABRIELLE
This is your only warning. Either leave this valley
forever, or suffer the wrath of Xena! Up, Argo!

Gabrielle whistles and Argo bows.

GABRIELLE
Up, Argo!

Argo stands and Gabrielle gives an uncomfortable laugh.

GABRIELLE
I always bow to my enemies before I destroy them!

NESS
She's bluffing. Get her!

Gabrielle whistles and Argo rides back to the village with the army at her heels.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Gabrielle rides up the village path.

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Gabrielle rides into the village. Gabrielle holds up the 'chakram' which is a barrel lid.

GABRIELLE
This is your last warning!

NESS
The man who gets her, gets her! By Talmadeus' orders!

Xena sticks her head out of the factory. Gabrielle throws the lid with a yell and Xena throws the chakram, which breaks a pipe that is holding back the water. The water shoots out at the army. Xena catches the chakram.

NESS
Get her!

XENA
Ready!

The villagers enter the scene.

NESS
Get her!

XENA
Now!

GORNEY
Shake! Aim!

NESS
Huh! Uh-oh.

GORNEY
Fire!

They let the corks on the water bottles fly. All the corks have spikes in them and they hit the army.

GORNEY
Advance! Fire!

A second group releases a volley of spiked corks.

NESS
Ah-h-h-h-h! Retreat!

The army retreats and the villagers cheer.

GABRIELLE
Xena!

Xena moves slowly back inside.

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Xena is moved on a stretcher.

PHOTIS
I can't tell you how much we appreciate what
you're doing here.

GORNEY
We don't have much to offer, but it's all yours
for the asking it. Lord Seltzer means the world
to us.

XENA
That's okay. I'm sure Lord Seltzer is more
concerned with his people than with himself.

SALMONEUS
Huh?

XENA
Heh?

SALMONEUS Oh! Oh, indeed, indeed. Now, I'd like all the
corks stored and inventoried, okay? To the cork
room. Very good. Hah-hah!

Photis and Gorney leave.

SALMONEUS
Sweet people. Not a business brain among 'em.

Salmoneus moves to get a drink, but he sprays the water on Xena. He takes off his hat and starts to dab her.

SALMONEUS
If you just give me a few moments to make my
peace with the gods, please.

Salmoneus leaves and Gabrielle enters.

GABRIELLE
I made sure the guards were posted.

XENA
Good, now let's get everybody out of the factory.
Tell them to go home, board up their houses
and stay inside. Talmadeus' focus right now is here.

GABRIELLE
Xena, can you just stop thinking of everybody
else for a second? There's gotta be something
I can do for you.

XENA
Don't worry about me. What did I tell you? Focus.
We've got Talmadeus on his heels. You need
to hit him at his camp. A direct attack will really
make him cautious. Take these.

Xena hands Gabrielle some small bags.

GABRIELLE
Xena, are you gonna die?

XENA
It's not about me. It's about these people. That's
why we're here. People like this used to be my
victims. I keep that in mind every time we come
up against a warlord like Talmadeus. It's the
greater good, remember that. Gabrielle, if it does
happen, I want to be taken back home to be buried
next to my brother, Lyceus. Go on, now. I'll be
here when you get back.

Gabrielle leaves.

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Talmadeus' camp.

TALMADEUS
I don't care if she is back. She's not gonna
keep me from Salmoneus. I've beaten her once,
I can do it again.

Gabrielle is heard.

GABRIELLE
Ay-yi-yi-yi-yi-yi-yi-yi!

One of the small bags is thrown from overhead, now on fire.

EXTRA
Incoming!

EXTRA
We're under attack!

TALMADEUS
It's Xena!

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Gabrielle lights another bag.

GABRIELLE
Ay-yi-yi-yi-yi-yi-yah!

Gabrielle throws the bag.

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The bag flies into the camp.

EXTRA
Save the weapons!

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Gabrielle stands with Argo.

GABRIELLE
Ay-yi-yi-yi-yi-yi-yi-yi-yi!

Gabrielle throws more bags.

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The bags fly into the camp.

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Gabrielle stands with Argo.

GABRIELLE
Ay-yi-yi-yi-yi-yi-yi-yi-yi!

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The soldiers put out the fire.

TALMADEUS
Don't panic, you fools! Get organized! And save
my tent first! Get those guards in position!

Gabrielle rides in on Argo with a yell. Talmadeus holds out a staff to trip Argo, but she jumps and Gabrielle is thrown off into a trough. The hair dye comes out and the soldiers pull her to her feet.

TALMADEUS
You're not Xena!

He laughs.

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Kalus and a warrior enter the factory.

END OF ACT TWO



ACT THREE

Xena searches the table for her weapons, but her sight it too blurry.

XENA
Where is it?

A chicken runs over Xena's feet and she stops and listens. She feels for a weapon, but finds only the water bottle. She holds it as Kalus and the other warrior move in on her. Xena turns suddenly and hits the warrior with a spray of water and then falls to the ground. She ties a rope to the bottle, throws it at Kalus who is sent flying. Xena pulls the bottle back to her and uses it to lasso the other warrior's legs. She pulls him to her and he rolls on top of her.

XENA
I hate uninvited guests.

Xena uses pressure points on him and then turns his body to face Kalus. Using pressure points, she makes the warrior kick and knock out Kalus. Xena breaks the warrior's neck and then crawls away, when suddenly she falls flat and remains there.

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Talmadeus' camp.

TALMADEUS
So it was all a trick. Xena was covering for some
weakness. I almost fell for it. Brilliant.

GABRIELLE
Maybe, you're falling for it right now. Maybe
my being captured is the trick. Have you thought
about that?

TALMADEUS
I can't help but admire your bravery. Too bad I
have to kill you.

He gets a sword.

GABRIELLE
Y--you don't have to.

TALMADEUS
Oh, don't worry; you'll soon have plenty of company
on Charon's boat. I'll make it quick.

Argo rides in and starts kicking butt.

GABRIELLE
Yeah!

EXTRA
Kill the horse!

Gabrielle gets her staff and frees herself. One soldier grabs Argo's reins.

EXTRA
Hah, you're not gonna kick me, you stupid horse!

GABRIELLE
I will!

Gabrielle kicks the man holding Argo. She mounts and rides off.

GABRIELLE
Go! Yah! Go, Argo! Go!

NESS
Get the horses!

TALMADEUS
No! Don't waste the effort.

GABRIELLE
Ay-yi-yi-yi-yi-yi-yi!

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Salmoneus enters the factory.

SALMONEUS
Oh, somebody konked me.

Salmoneus sees the second soldier and knocks him out. Salmoneus sees Xena.

SALMONEUS
Xena? Xena?

He shakes her.

SALMONEUS
This is a trick, right? Come on.

Salmoneus holds Xena. He feels for a pulse and then for breathing but finds neither.

SALMONEUS
Proud warrioress...

He lays her down.

SALMONEUS
I will miss you.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Sun sets.

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Talmadeus' camp.

TALMADEUS (voice-over)
Any word from Kalus?

NESS (voice-over)
Ah, no sir, nothing.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Inside Talmadeus' tent.

NESS
Maybe the Warrior Princess is still alive.

TALMADEUS
No!

Talmadeus hits him.

TALMADEUS
That's the kind of talk that paralyzed this army.
That's exactly what Xena wanted. This entire
valley is mine for the taking. And it's time I started.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Gabrielle runs into the factory.

GABRIELLE
Xena! Xena, we've got trouble!

SALMONEUS
Wait a second.

GABRIELLE
Salmoneus, get out of my way!

SALMONEUS
Wait a second!

GABRIELLE
What?

She looks in Salmoneus' eyes.

GABRIELLE
No.

The villagers part so Gabrielle can see Xena's covered body on the stretcher. Gabrielle moves over to her and removes the blanket. She stares at Xena's lifeless form. Salmoneus ushers out the villagers and joins Gabrielle. Gabrielle sniffles, strokes Xena's hair, and the then gently places a kiss on Xena's cheek.

SALMONEUS
Okay, there's nothing we can do here. We've
gotta get out of here. That's what I think. What
do you think?

GABRIELLE
If we can move these barrels, we can make a
defensive wall that will take days to breech.

SALMONEUS
Defense? Breech?

GABRIELLE
And when you're done with that, gather as much
wood as you can without leaving the area.

SALMONEUS
How long can these people hold out against
Talmadeus' army?

GABRIELLE
Long enough for me to get to Labottie. I think
Iolaus is there.

SALMONEUS
If you're leaving this valley, I am coming with you.
I am not gonna be killed. Talmadeus will do
both of us.

GABRIELLE
This is not about you or me, Salmoneus. It's
about these people. Now, that's why we're here,
why Xena was here. We are staying and fighting
for the greater good. Get to work.

Gabrielle leaves.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Gabrielle exits the factory and takes Argo.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Salmoneus turns around inside.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Gabrielle beats a tree with her staff, yelling.

GABRIELLE
No! No!

She then falls to the ground, sobbing.

GABRIELLE
I have to focus. I have to focus. Xena said to focus.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------
The villagers leave the factory and Salmoneus sits next to Xena's body which is once more covered.

SALMONEUS
All right. I know what I have to do.

Salmoneus leaves.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Talmadeus' camp.

SALMONEUS (voice-over)
Take me, take Xena and--and let the people go.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Talmadeus and Salmoneus shake hands.

SALMONEUS
You're a man of your word, right?

Talmadeus tightens his grip.

SALMONEUS
Ow! Just checking.

TALMADEUS
Now...where's Xena?

SALMONEUS
She's at the factory. She's dead. Now remember,
we have a deal, right?

TALMADEUS
Yes, yes, don't worry. I'm an honourable man,
as you say. Go. Lead my army to Xena. Bring
her and the villagers here. When I know she's
truly dead, then I'll let everyone go.

Salmoneus leaves.

TALMADEUS
(to Ness) Salmoneus, Xena dead and a whole
village of slaves to be sold. It's turned out to be
a good day.

Talmadeus and Ness laugh.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------
In the factory, Xena's fingers move.

END OF ACT THREE



ACT FOUR

Talmadeus' camp.

SALMONEUS
Okay, I fulfilled my end of the bargain. Now make
me proud to have done business with you and
let these people go.

Talmadeus sits in his thrown, playing with Xena's chakram.

TALMADEUS
Bring out Xena's body.

EXTRA
You heard him.

EXTRA
Right.

Xena is thrown to the ground and she falls out of the blanket they carried her in. Gabrielle watches from the bushes.

TALMADEUS
Ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha. Who killed Xena?

SALMONEUS
I, uh, I don't know.

TALMADEUS
You don't know. It's obvious and soon the entire
world will know. I killed her!

Talmadeus' men cheer.

TALMADEUS
The great Talmadeus has taken down the
Warrior Princess.

Gabrielle moves.

TALMADEUS
But, business is business and a good businessman
just gives what he is given. You gave me talcamite
weapons and I lost a battle. I'm giving back. Now-

Ness holds a dagger on Salmoneus.

TALMADEUS
-selling these people of yours to the slavers is
good business.

SALMONEUS
We had a deal! Hey!

TALMADEUS
Bring out the horses.

Argo and another horse are brought in.

TALMADEUS
Let's tear this carcass limb from limb.

Gabrielle enters fights Talmadeus' army

EXTRA
Hey!

TALMADEUS
I like her spirit.

Gabrielle beats every attacker. She knocks a sword into the air, vaults over a man, somersaults, stands in front of Talmadeus, catches the sword and holds it on him.

GABRIELLE
I'm taking my friend and we're leaving. Got it?!

TALMADEUS
You fight well. I might ask you to join.

GABRIELLE
I'm taking her home to her brother.

TALMADEUS
I can see you're determined.

Gabrielle whistles and Argo attempts to join her, but her reins are held.

GABRIELLE
Put her on the horse. Now!

TALMADEUS
How long do you think you can keep this up? The
moment your head turns, the moment your eyes
flicker, I've got you and you know it. You don't
even know how to hold a sword.

Gabrielle looks at the sword and Talmadeus grabs her.

TALMADEUS
You people are pathetic! Such nobility, such a
complete waste of time.

Ness passes Salmoneus to another soldier who holds a sword to Salmoneus' neck, while the Ness holds a dagger at Gabrielle's.

TALMADEUS
Tie Xena to the horses!

Xena is tied to the horses by her legs and arms. Argo looks over and speaks to the other horse. They have a brief conversation.

TALMADEUS
All right, finish it!

Argo and the other horse are whipped, but they refuse to move. Argo looks over at the other horse and they talk again. The men stop whipping them.

TALMADEUS
That's Xena's horse. Kill it.

GABRIELLE
No!

Argo looks at Talmadeus with her ears up. The soldier draws his sword, but as he brings it down, a hand catches his. Xena stands.

TALMADEUS
Xena?!

SALMONEUS
Xena?!

GABRIELLE
Xena!

XENA
Don't you ever touch my horse again.

Xena beats up the soldier.

TALMADEUS
Get her!

The men rush Xena and she fights them. Xena throws Gabrielle's staff into Ness and Gabrielle takes her staff and joins the battle. The soldier holding Salmoneus lets him go and joins the fight.

SALMONEUS
Yeah!

Gabrielle moves over to Xena.

GABRIELLE
Glad to have you back. Don't you ever do this again.

XENA
Gabrielle, we're in the middle of a fight!

Xena and Gabrielle fight the warriors while Salmoneus frees the villagers.

SALMONEUS
Go.

Xena and Gabrielle fight while Salmoneus frees the villagers.

SALMONEUS
Leave, quick, run, quickly!

Talmadeus grabs him.

TALMADEUS
At least I get my revenge on you.

XENA
Think again.

Talmadeus turns to face Xena who punches him.

SALMONEUS
Thank you!

Salmoneus runs off and Xena fights Talmadeus as the villagers fight his men.

TALMADEUS
I'm glad you're not dead. It would have robbed me of this.

XENA
Well, it would have saved me from your breath.

Xena beats Talmadeus and throws him in the trough. The villagers hold swords on him. He yells and then sinks into the water. The villagers cheer.

EXTRA
Xena!

EXTRA
Xena!

----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Village. Xena is in her clothes and Gabrielle in hers. The villagers celebrate.

XENA
I'm glad to see you two are getting along.

GABRIELLE
Hmm. Well, the best of friends are made in strange
situations. And Argo's okay. I mean, at least, I
know she doesn't hate me. She's still too tall,
though. And I am angry with you. I mean, I really
thought that you were, you know...

XENA
I was. Talmic poison shuts everything down. I
had to go under with it just to fight the effects. I
didn't expect to be under it so long, is all.

GABRIELLE
You still don't know who hit you with that dart.

XENA
Whoever it was, sure knew what they were doing.
We just have to figure out why. Gabrielle, when
you thought I was dead, you risked your life to
try and take me back home.

GABRIELLE
It was your last wish. For all that you've given
me, and all the times that you saved my life, I
would go to Tartarus and back just to carry it out.

XENA
I used to wonder whether I'd ever make it back,
and now I know that, one way or another, I'm
going home one day. Thank you.

GABRIELLE
Change the subject. I'm gonna get all soft on you.

XENA
We wouldn't want that, would we?

Xena shuttles and Gabrielle walks ahead with Argo. Xena holds the dart and looks back at the village, wondering.

END OF ACT FOUR

STARRING
Lucy Lawless as Xena
Renee O'Connor as Gabrielle

GUEST CAST
Robert Trebor as Salmoneus
Peter McCauley as Talmadeus
Jonathon Hendry as Ness
Natalya Humphrey as Photis
Timothy James Adam as Kalus
David Mitchell as Gorney
Kenneth Prebble as Old Man

Written by: Steven L. Sears
Directed by: Gary Jones

Disclaimer: Excessive belching can cause brain damage and social ostracism. Kids, please don't give in to peer pressure. Play it safe.