She’s baaaaack. Our favorite blonde wacko . . .hold on it’s not Callisto. The other blonde wacko – Najara!!

Yes, the thorn in Xena’s side had come back to wreck havoc on her love life with the bard. (Personal note: Even my mother, while watching this one, said "Gabby get a clue!"(LOL))

Onto our tale . . .

Xena busts into a temple fightin’ lots of bad guys. She does the super duper kick to this guys head repeatedly that I thought was great (LOL). I have a violent side okay? Is it so wrong for me to like Xena kick butt now and then?(G).

Joxer and Gabby walk in after the bad guys begin to ‘head for the hills’ so to speak. A temple dude tells them to get the girls and conveniently on cue . . .a woman screams (VBG). They race outside to see the warlord, Criton, beating someone up. He and Xena fight and we get to see Gabby’s new weapon. It’s a compact – you know a make up case and she blows powder in people’s eyes. Personally I think it’s more humane to get beat with a stick than to get stuff in my eyes – I HATE WHEN THAT HAPPENS!! I fear the optometrist more than the dentist but that’s just me. (G)

Anyway, Gabby wards off some bad dudes long enough to see the person who was being beaten is Najara – you remember Najara the religious zealot that made Gabby her ‘responsibility’ (G); the one who’s got a big-time weakness for the bard. The one who made Xena lose a good chewing tooth. Anyway, it’s her.

Meanwhile, Criton trips during the battle and falls onto Joxer's knife and dies. The army of thugs flee after seeing their leader is dead and Gabby calls Xena over. Xena can’t believe her luck and of course has to make a smart- a$$ comment to Najara about her getting out for good behavior. Gabby thinks Najara might have broken ribs and Xena takes great pleasure in checking by pushing on Najara’s battered body to check. I could have sworn she smirked when Najara growled in pain. She’s fine according to Xena – just a little bruised and battered.

Joxer is having a tough time with the fact he killed someone. Xena tells him that she and Najara have a checkered history and she should be in prison. A girl rushes up from the group of women and says that Najara tried to free them and she didn’t raise a hand against Criton. She’s a saint they tell Xena. But ole Xena ain’t buying it but since they love Najara so much Xena has found free labor to build a litter to carrying Najara.

They put Criton on Argo and drag Najara from behind. Once at the village a man comes out and says that rumor has it someone’s killed Criton. Joxer says it was him, fearing the worst. The guy looks at the dead body and offers to buy Joxer a drink to toast him. The people love Joxer and they head to the bar.

Meanwhile, Najara is choking on some water and Xena goes back to see what’s going on. She sounds sooooo concerned too when she asks what’s wrong. (G) Najara tells her the story of how she changed and realized the err of her ways. She escaped prison to do good. Gabby comes to Najara’s defense and Xena says she can’t believe what she’s hear – not so much Najara’s story but the fact that Gabby is defending blondie. Watch Najara scoot closer into Gabrielle’s arms before Xena turns away disgusted.

Xena finds Joxer drunk at the bar. The guy he met earlier lets it slip that Criton has a son at the academy. Now Joxer feels worse. He decides he’s going to confess to the boy that he killed his father. Xena wants to know if Joxer is thinking this through but he’s made up his mind and she agrees it’s best for him.

Najara said the Jinn stopped talking to her after Gabrielle left. She met a man who had come from India named Eli and she knew she had to go the way of peace. Then the Jinn came back. She escaped prison by hiding in some laundry and swimming down river. Gab asked what she’s been doing and she said she’s been helping people with crops and other good non-violent stuff. She was ‘working toward the day the Jinn said would come. When you and I would meet again – united in a common bond that not even Xena shares." Gabby asked, "The Jinn said that?" Najara replies, "We walk the same path Gabrielle. Our lives are dedicated to defeating evil through peace. It’s our way . . ."

You gotta give Najara points for trying. (G)

Joxer has visions of Criton taunting him and Xena tries to help him with no luck. Gabrielle and Najara do a little bondage next (LOL). Actually Gabby tied her up so she wouldn’t escape – well at least that’s the reason Gabby gave Xena (VBG) (Just kidding folks). Gabby takes great care in making sure she doesn’t hurt Najara and apologizes for having to tie her. Najara said it’s unneeded. She isn’t going to run adding; "If Xena thinks I’m gonna anywhere now that I’ve found you and our way she’s crazy." With that Najara reaches her bound hands up and caresses Gabby’s face (ahhhhhhh. . . it would be sweet ya know if Najara wasn’t such a wacko (G)).

Najara rolls over to go to sleep and Gabby watches her a few moments. Finally she walks back to the bedroll she and Xena share – yes you heard that right, only one bedroll. Not two next to each other at a safe distance but two together (VBG).

Xena asks Gabby if she tied Najara and Gabby doesn’t answer, making Xena say her name. I love the way Xena says her name – makes me all tingly inside (LOL). Gabby says yes but she thinks Najara heading back to prison is a waste. Xena says, basically that Gabby’s being suckered. Gabby starts to argue and Xena gives her side. And it dies down for a moment. Gabby gives up the debate and Xena rolls over to go to sleep. Gabby tells Xena that Eli changed Najara and Gabby asks if she’s awake. Xena doesn’t answer but her eyes are wide open.

On the way to see Criton's son Najara is atop Argo still bound while Xena leads the reins. They have this discussion:

N:You’re awfully quiet Xena but then you never were one to waste words.

X:Nothing’s changed

N: Including me? Is that it Xena?

X: New outfit, new religion, same old wacko underneath

N: You claim to have changed. Why can’t I? We both had the same inspiration – Gabrielle. But unlike you I changed my whole life for her. You just changed sides.

X: You hurt Gabrielle and I’ll change you in ways that are anything but peaceful!

N: You forget, hurting Gabrielle is your job. Or have those visions gone away? You know – the visions of your death. . .and hers. I want to share a life of peace with Gabrielle. You want to share a violent death. You tell me. . .who’s the villain here – me or you?

Xena doesn’t reply. They just walk on to the academy.

At the academy Criton’s son Xena tells him of his fathers death. The father that he thought was a hero, running around doing good – after all that’s why all of them where there – his comrades so to speak. Amaul decides he’s going to seek revenge against his father’s murderer. At this point they haven’t told him who that person is (G). Xena convinces Amaul to travel with them awhile and think things over. He agrees and they all leave together. Xena’s developed quite a little band at this point. (G)

Gabby tends to Najara’s wounds in the river. She putting some ointment on Najara and asks if she wants her to stop. Of course, Najara says no – I mean honestly if Gabby had you in the river rubbing your shoulder would you say no(G). I know I wouldn’t. I love Gabby. Have I mentioned that?(VBG)

Anyway, they talk about the hospice they were going to start. Najara said it isn’t too late and they have this exchange.

G: Starting a hospice would be good for you. . .but it’s not for me. My place is with Xena.

(Hold up! Stop the presses! If she’s turning Najara down does that mean that Gabby has ‘committed’ to Xena fully. Does it mean that Gabby has quit looking for Mr. Right to make her dreams come true? My guess. . .you betcha she has!!(LOL). Okay. . .sorry. . .back to our dialog. . .)

N: I know and it always will until her continuing violence finally makes her do something that even you can’t excuse.

G: That’s not going to happen.

N: It has to. . .and then you will have to choose – not between me and Xena but between Xena and your own soul.

Ooooooh, heavy stuff Najara. Did Gabby ever tell you about the time when Xena rigged her to a horse and dragged her halfway across Greece and then proceeded to throw her off a cliff? Did she tell you that little tale? It doesn’t get much worse than that Najara? Sorry just venting(G)

Anyway, a guy comes up to the campsite and wants to battle Joxer since he killed Criton. Joxer of course says the guy is mistaken because he doesn’t want Amaul who’s standing right there to know. Joxer does something extremely brave. He knocks the guy with a left hook. The dude felt it too but he comes back and floors Joxer. Amaul rushes the guy and the guy knocks him down too. Only one left standing is the guy. . . and Xena (G). He rushes and she shoves him down, drawing her sword. Najara and Gabby are on their way back and they see what’s going on. Xena lets the guy get up and run away and the two women study Xena. I’m not sure why they did that. I couldn’t read the expression on either of their faces.

Later that night Xena and Argo have a cute Xena/Argo exchange as Gabby comes up and calls Xena to supper. Once more they argue over Najara and GET THIS! . . . Xena gives her the swishing ‘end of discussion’ arm gesture. She ACTUALLY STOOD UP to the bard for the first time since season two. That’s it! The argument is over! No further questions or comments! They both go back to their stew.

Joxer thanks Amaul for his help and is on the verge of confession but doesn’t do it. . . so Najara sneaks over and does it for him after he leaves. Oooooh. . . she’s so . . .so. . .naughty (LOL). Joxer sits down to eat and says ‘I hate this’. Gabby says she’s cooked better and Xena agrees with ‘You said it’. Oooooh again. . .they gotta be fightin’ if the warrior is knockin’ the bards cookin’ (LOL).

Joxer said he wasn’t talking about the stew as Amaul and Najara come up behind them all. He’s gonna rip Joxer apart. Xena stops him physically and Gabby talks him out of it. He walks away in tribute to the memory of whom he thought his father was.

The dawn finally breaks. It’s a wonderful sunny day. . . .and Xena and Gabby are still arguing over Najara. Xena gets Gabby with a great zinger to shut her up about how Najara is more dangerous now. Gabby asks why. Xena said because Najara has Gabby on her side. Gabby doesn’t reply. But they really don’t have time either because Amaul comes running into camp saying that Criton’s men want to kill Joxer. Amaul said he knows that his father was a warlord but he’ll keep the good memory of him. Xena sends everyone away. Amaul and Joxer get on Argo and Najara and Gabby take to the bushes.

Xena does some nice fight scenes again but she gets cut on the leg and Gabby sees her start to go down, aware that Xena’s been hurt. She tries to run out but Najara holds her back, preaching about Eli’s way. Gabby starts to work free and Najara grabs Gabby by the hair. She starts talking to the Jinn and gets really wacky telling Gabby that she (the bard) should be able to hear them too. Gabby gets her compact and gets free. Just as Xena comes over. The bad guys are all gone and Xena tells Najara it’s over.

Najara however doesn’t hold that opinion and they fight. Great fight scene too that ends up in the trees. You’d swear Najara was part amazon. Anyway, Xena wins and they take her to a convent where the nuns would help her heal, even though she’s in a coma. Of course if they need a ratings boost I’m sure Najara will make a stunning recovery (VBG).

As they are leaving Gabrielle tells Xena that sometimes when push comes to shove the choice is to shove back. Xena tells her not to worry. As long as she’s around she’ll do all of Gabby’s shoving for her. Ahhhhh. . .now that’s love (G).

Next week’s looks pretty good. All you Discord fans will love it and Auto makes an appearance. Cyrene, Xena’s mum (G), is also on hand in this on. We got to see both sets of parents in a single season folks. We haven’t had that since the first year.(G). Maybe TPTB are starting to listen to us. . .nahhhhhhhhhhh(VBG) Take care

CN Winters
Queen of Maintext