A FRIEND IN NEED PART I

BY

C.N. WINTERS


Gabby talks about life where they are and where they're going while she looks up at the stars. Ahh yes the philosophical bard. Gotta love her. I know I do. I love Gabby. Have I mentioned that? (VBG) Xena tells Gabby maybe they could go to the land of the pharos. She heard they might need a gal with a chakram. Gabby pauses and tells her someone is in the bushes. Xena said she heard them roaming around for awhile. Gabby gets up to inspect and Xena watches for a moment and then follows.

A monk shows up and says he saw Akemi at a teahouse. He and a buddy need a place to come inside from a rainstorm. They see three beautiful women (hubba, hubba). His buddy gets it on with two gals in a hot tub. The monk however is being a somewhat more faithful religious figure just admires Akemi who's playing some music. As things heat up in the bathtub we get the idea that bad things are afoot for the teahouse of horrors. A wicked looking face melts through a wall and forms into an ugly looking dude. Ugly dude sucks up the monk’s friend as he looks on. He runs (no kidding) and the young woman tells him to fight the soul stealer, handing him a sword AKA katana. He pretty much tells her she’s got the WRONG guy! She tells him to take the sword west. He asks if he’s looking for a priest or a god or something. She tells him he’s looking for a warrior princess.

End of teaser.

Gabrielle is drilling with the monk with staffs as he tells her that it’s better for a warrior to die as a martyr than to live as a coward. Gabby, green-eyed monster slowly peering its head, asks about Akemi. He tells her that Akemi is beautiful and she stole souls for Yosi and she’s a ghost. Gabby gives Xena the ‘eye’ from where she’s sunning on ‘Rob’s Folly’. Xena says she has to tell Gabby the story. Gabby takes a spot next to Xena in their ‘bathing suits’.

She says she had to go to Japan with Borias to find a kidnapped girl for the ransom. And if she could take over the country while there that would be good too (LOL). Young Xena was so ambitious and idealistic. Ya gotta love her too. I love Evil Xena. Have I mentioned that? (VBG) Anyway, they met the young woman who automatically knows Xena's name. The girl tells her that Xena will love her. She tells Xena she has to take her with her and teach her everything she knows. Borias says Xena loves no one. Which earns him a dirty look from the WP. Akemi’s capture however doesn’t want to make a trade of 50 gold pieces. Xena put the pinch on him while Borias sits and drinks some tea.. Xena fights some bad guys. Borias continues to drink some tea. Xena fights some more bad guys and steals the girl to ransom her back to her father. On a ship the girl tries to learn how to fight. Xena kicks her in the stomach and tells her the first lesson is to trust no one. They leave the ship and walk through the forest. Akemi gives Xena a piece of paper and tells her that she writes. Gee…another bard. Go figure. (VBG) She wrote a love poem for Xena.

We go back to Xe and Gab and Gab tells Xena she must have loved Akemi very much. Xena says, ‘actually she broke my heart’. Gabby says she doesn't understand what that means. Xena says that when she went to get the ransom she realized she was seeking something else.

Akemi stops by a rickety house and says she has to get her blessing from her grandfather. Xena's pissed because they’ve been walking away from the palace and she wants to get her money. She raises her sword to decapitate her but she stops. The girl prays and rises to say her grandfather thinks Xena can teach her much but she's not the best 'sword'. Akemi talks about the Katana but says women can't own it. Of course the word can't is just a catalyst for Xena. The girl takes her to the sensei for the sword. Xena beats them all to a pulp and takes it. But not before she has to ‘save her sidekick’ just once. (VBG) They’re setting you up folks – I think we’ll find out in part two that Gabrielle is in some way Akemi, if not then they have a realllllllllllllly close comparison the producers are trying to draw for no reason what so ever. But back to the story….

Later that night the two of them are making shelter. Xena tells her that she's a nice kid but she came for the ransom. Akemi tells her that's not true. Akemi asks Xena what she ‘hears’ since Xena seems to be in tune with the things around them. Xena says she can feel Akemi's heart beating faster than normal. Akemi loves her and says she wants to have Xena teach her the pinch. Xena agrees.

Back to present, Gabby's trying to read Xena the riot act. ‘You only knew her a few weeks and you taught her the pinch after all this time you and I.’ Looks like Gabby's gotta little pen...erghh.....pinch envy going on there (VBG). The captain comes and says he's not gonna dock. The city they are going to is on fire. Xena says she's jumpin'. Gabby says she's coming too. Xena smiles expecting as much. Xena goes first and Gabby shakes he head but does the heave ho over the ship. At the city they decide to destroy the water tower. They go through a ton of great action shots, helping each other travel to the top of the tower. But I did notice something. Xena couldn't help Gabby turn on the water main - she just watched. The main does open and Xena says it's not the way she would have done it (i.e. this is the ET clip folks). It seems that Xena is watching to see if she’s trained Gabby the ‘right way’ and if she’s become a warrior like Xena. They come down from the tower and Gabby asks if Akemi ever used the pinch. Xena says unfortunately yes.

Flashback time!! They traveled back to her father's palace. We see Akemi in a mask. When she reveals herself she puts the pinch on a guy who she says killed her family. Xena busts in and takes on the guards who come after Akemi. Akemi then tells the man that it’s over father. Akemi then asks Xena to kill her since she just whacked her pop off. Xena won't do it because she’s grown attached to the girl. So Akemi stabs herself telling her that her love will go on. Xena can't watch Akemi suffering so she chops her head off. Nothing says love like a good head chopping.

In the present a man approaches and he says Xena has trapped the souls of the village. Xena tells Gabby what happened. In the past with short hair and face paint. She drunkenly tries to make it to the temple with Akemi’s ashes as she requested when she was dying. But the people of the village try to stop her. Akemi's ashes get scattered through the town and it lights up. It seems Akemi's dad, Yosi, was really evil and it didn't stop after his death. In fact he trapped the souls that burned in the town thanks to Xena. Xena feels it's all her fault. Gabby says it's an accident. Xena says she's gonna put it right.

Xena is teaching Gabby how to 'listen'. Gabby hears three armies approaching and says she's going to warn the others. Xena sees the old man from the village and calls him the ghost killer. He says he'd kill Yosi but he can't get close enough since he's mortal and Yosi is on the spirit plain. Xena is then seen kneeling and says she knows what she has to do. Gabby comes in and asks why she isn't ready yet. Xena has Gabrielle sit in front of her. Xena takes Gabby's hands in hers and makes her feel her veins to show her how to do the pinch. She wants Gabby to know what she knows. Gabby wants to know why she's doing this. She says if she's only got 30 seconds to live she wants to spend it looking in Gabby's eyes. Gabby begs her not to die and Xena shows her how to release the pinch. Gabby's not quite sure why Xena is wigging out. To be honest I'm not sure either. But Xena says it's important that she teach Gabby everything she knows but they've got a battle to fight right now. Xena gets up and next we see Gabby walking with the monk. The monk asks why Xena isn't coming with them and Gabby tells him that they are splitting up to attack from two different angles. Xena is dressed in her Samurai bikini.

 

End of Part 1