Disclaimer: Buffy the Vampire Slayer was created by Joss Whedon and Mutant Enemy Productions and is licensed by 20th Century Fox. Xena was created by Robert Tapert and Renaissance Pictures. Only the ideas contained within this story are mine. No profit has been, or will be, made by writing this story.
“You’d think, given my experience, I’d be a little more careful.” Lorne mutters to himself. “One minute I’m reaching in the fridge for the mixings of a Sea Breeze and the next I’m here; wherever this might be. If I can find intelligent life in these woods maybe I’ll discover where I am and how a portal developed in my fridge!” Intimidated by the dark forest Lorne carefully picks his way over the dirt path.
Naturally uncomfortable in this type of environment Lorne starts to imagine the trees on either side of the path pressing down in a stifling manner. As he looks up he notices only faint glimmers of light are shining through the dappled green leaves. You couldn’t drive a car on this road. In fact the best use of this path would be by horse or ox-cart. He pauses horrified with that thought.
Drawing up short when he spots a small town in the distance he pauses to consider the type of creatures he may have to deal with. Breathing a small sigh of relief he spies humans wearing simple cloth robes and leather sandals. At least they’re human, he briefly thinks. People are socializing in front of their dwellings as they cook in pots in front of their homes. Small dirty children and mongrel dogs are running as they chase each other playfully on the streets below. Upon further examination he can see what looks like a blacksmith in the center of the town. There are no automobiles or modern devices of any kind only horses and oxen, wagons and carts. Feeling dejected he knows that not only is this not a lifestyle he would be happy living but the people below would probably would not accept him in their midst.
Trying to keep his spirits up and avoid having to deal with the townspeople below he inspects his attire and sarcastically mutters, “I’m completely wearing the wrong suit.” As he holds the lapels of his tailor made purple double breasted away from him he adds, “And the ascot is definitely too much.”
While fussing over his wardrobe attempting to keep his mind off the very real horror of being stuck someone in Earth’s dreary past he hears the sound of hoof beats approaching.
Diving headfirst into a nearby bush he peers between the leaves hoping to catch a glimpse of the riders as they go past.
Instead the horses slow down and stop directly in front of his bush.
“Why are we stopping Xena?” complains a feisty blonde “The city below will provide us with food and drinks. We will be able to stable our horses and share a much needed bath. I have been so looking forward to sleeping indoors in comfort! Imagine a warm mattress stuffed with straw! I want to be pampered!”
Lorne grimaces at this description of ‘creature comforts’.
“Shhhhhhh quiet Gabrielle. There is something about in the forest nearby.”
Xena jumps off of her horse to stare into the woods around her. Gabrielle comes up beside her to see if she can observe what has set off Xena’s alarm bells.
Lorne catches his breath and closes his eyes hoping these women warriors will get back on their horses and just go away. Suddenly he feels the bush he is crouched behind part from above. The tip of a sword rests between his eyes.
“What are you demon?” snarls Xena “Tell me why I shouldn’t gut you before I take my rest?”
“Hey sweetcheeks” drawls Lorne whose eyes popped open the moment he felt the iron touch his face. “I would never hurt anyone particularly not someone as lovely as you.” He holds his arms in the air in the universal gesture of surrender. “I’m not even armed.” Lorne slowly stands in front of the women attempting to look as innocent as he possibly can and walks around the bush to stand on the road before them.
“Look at his skin Xena, and his flaming red horns match the hellfire that is shining from his eyes! He must be a missionary from Hades look at his clothes … see how he is so strangely attired!”
“Hey pussycat I’m right here and I’ve been very good to refrain from making personal comments. I’d like to point out how silent I’ve been. I have not spoken about the leather fetish your friend is embracing. And your own clothes, where did you get them? Right off the loom?”
“Who are you, why are you here and what do you want?” questions Xena whose sword point is on Lorne’s chest. Secretly amused she does her best to ignore her best friend and the demon bicker.
“Listen dollface, my name is Lorne. I accidentally slipped through a portal in my refrigerator and I would kill for a Seabreeze. Hair of the dog if you know what I mean?” He gives Xena a teasing wink and nudges her with his elbow.
“Did you hear that Xena? The demon wants to kill someone or something named Sea Breeze! Gut him now!”
“Whoa princess! I was just expressing my desire for my favorite alcoholic drink which would do wonders for my hangover.”
Xena smiles finding Lorne charming and asks, “What do you do demon?”
“Ok, enough with the demon labeling. I already told you my name is Lorne. I own a nightclub, a demon bar. Heck, we even have nightly entertainment.”
“Entertainment! Perhaps that’s what he calls the ritualistic rape and slaughter of virgins?”
“What’s wrong with you?” Lorne asks Gabrielle. “Can you please send her away? Her aggressiveness is freaking me out?” He pleads with Xena.
Xena rolls her eyes. She sheaves her sword and hands the reins of her horse to Gabrielle. “Gabrielle would you please look after the horses and find us a room? I want to talk to Lorne.”
Gabrielle takes the reins and heads down the hill into the town looking back with quick darting glances. She is reluctant to leave her friend with this evidently evil creature. Lorne waves good-bye to her in an impish parting fashion knowing he will never be friends with the departing blonde.
“I wouldn’t do that if I were you,” drawls Xena.
“Gabrielle is very inventive when she wants to get even. So tell me … what is your real story?”
Lorne, now that he is alone with Xena, relaxes a bit and takes a good hard look at her. He notices her icy blue eyes which cause an unexpected ripple of excitement to run through him. For the first time in his life he wished that he could look more human. Or to be more exact, to have attractive human features like his buddy Angel so that this vision before him would be interested in him as a mate.
“Truthfully beautiful, I’m an anagogic demon; I came here through a portal that appeared in my fridge.” At her quizzical look he explains, “The cold box where I store my food and beverages. I have no idea why the portal appeared and I have no idea how I can return.”
“Anagogic? What kind of abilities do you have?”
“Well, when someone sings I’m able to see into their future; I am endowed with the abilities of aura reading and precognition.”
“Will you give me a reading?” Xena asks shyly.
Lorne is happy to comply knowing he would do anything for this gorgeous woman.
Looking directly into his eyes Xena sings a beautiful and heartbreaking ballad that brings tears to Lorne’s eyes as he sees her future. As her song comes to an end Lorne is left speechless.
“You are the single most talented Champion I have ever met. Your courage and skill will be the down fall of many wicked warlords and your selfless actions will bring about the salvation of many.” Lorne keeps it vague not wanting to tell her the hurt, pain, betrayal and death her sees in her future feeling it would be too much for anyone to stand and wanting to protect her, even for just a little bit, from the anguish she will suffer.
Xena, not realizing the amount of information Lorne is hiding from her, thanks him for giving her the reading. She reaches over and surprises them both by giving him a quick hug. Missing the feeling of being in a strong male embrace she relaxes in his arms. She breaths in deeply and smells his clean fresh scent and cologne. Daily bathing being an unnatural occurrence in her society she tightens her hold on him as he pulls her closer and kisses her.
Their gentle explorations turn into a heated exchange which is rudely interrupted by Aries, the God of War’s, abrupt appearance.
“Give me a break! Xena, you partake in some serious heavy petting with a demon you only met today but you won’t give me another chance? Begone you!” he shouts at Lorne.
With a wave of Aries’ hand Lorne disappears in a flash of smoke. Xena adjusts the straps of her leather bustier and leisurely begins her decent into the town below touching her lips and smiling at the recent memory.
“Hey come back here!” Aries yells. “At least I belong in this timeline!”
Lorne appears standing once more in front of his open refrigerator. Looking down at his hands he can see that he is holding some cranberry juice to make his favorite drink.
“Shit, this is not what I want to be holding right now!” he curses to himself as he slams the door and walks out of the room.