Disclaimers: The Xenaverse is owned by Universal/Renaissance, created by Rob Tapert.

Summary: Hades returns to the Underworld after the events in "WISDOM OF THE AGES" and discovers something.

Author's Notes: Archangel Gabriel not to be confused with Gabrielle.

Rating – PG

Romance

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POMEGRANATE MAGICK

 

All was quiet when Hades returned to his Realm, and he sighed to himself, relieved the ordeal had come to a peaceful end, the Gods shaken although no major damage had been done. Cupid and Gabriel had delivered the Angels’ ultimatum to the Gods. Some accepted it, others, like Ares had met it with some animosity, though wisely backed down, albeit reluctantly - anyone who had the power to destroy the Olympian Order was not to be brushed off lightly.

Hades removed his crown and ran his hand through his hair, set to retire for the night. The Lord of the Underworld entered his chambers to find Persephone nibbling a grapefruit, a tad confused at first, as she’d always hated the bitter fruit. Her face brightened when she saw her husband. The Goddess of Spring set the half eaten fruit down, approaching him and placed her arms around him.

"Ohh, My love " Gently she kissed his cheek. "I was so worried "

Hades smiled warmly. "I told you not to worry."

"And you thought I wouldn’t?"

Softly, Hades kissed her. "Everything’s fine now," he assured, holding her gently.

Persephone smiled. "I know, thanks to you,"

"Cupid did help," Hades said.

Persephone smiled. "You never told me you were versed in the ways of Wicca..." She said after a pause.

"It comes in handy from time to time," Hades said.

"How did you learn? It’s always fascinated me, though I thought you might not approve."

Hades smiled. "It may not be traditional, but then sometimes tradition isn’t always what’s needed As for how I learned, Gaia, my grandmother taught me. She wanted me to learn. She incited a protection spell when she protected me from my father Cronus and told me it would be useful, and it has been." Hades smiled warmly. "I wasn’t sure if I could tell you about it, though. I "

"You weren’t sure if I’d accept it?" Persephone smiled. "Looks like we were both afraid of the same thing."

Hades brushed a lock of wavy hair from his wife’s cheek and kissed her softly.

"Up until now, Celesta and Gaia are the only others who know."

Persephone kissed her husband back. "We’ve been married for seven years, Hades, please don’t think there’s anything you can’t tell me." Gently she placed her arms around her love.

Hades smiled warmly as he stroked her silky hair. "Same with you, my love So tell me, why are you eating yellow grapefruit when you can’t stand the things, or did you have a change of tongue?"

Persephone giggled. "No, I still think they’re vile I just had a strange craving for them Must be that time "

"Must be serious if you’re craving grapefruit."

Persephone couldn’t hold back a smile as Hades carried her to the bedchambers.

Together, they slept, a peaceful undisturbed long sleep, relaxing both their bodies and minds.

Hades still slept when Persephone awoke, the Goddess not feeling very well and again she became worried, though did not want to wake or trouble her beloved.

Hades awoke within the hour, though did not wish to rise just yet. He realised how grateful he was just to be alive, knowing how close the Gods hand come to losing one of the most precious things in the Universe, something he had felt ashamed for taking for granted.

The Lord of the Underworld used his powers to conjure some fruit, feeling rather hungry and he began to eat, again appreciating something as simple as a fresh nectarine.

Later that day, Hades ventured above his realm, without his helmet. Something he rarely did, though today he had been given a new appreciation for life, as he gazed out onto the ocean, wondering if his brother had been given the same appreciation. He hoped so as he looked into the almost cloudless sky and also wondered if the King of the Gods had been humbled as he had.

A gentle breeze caressed him and Hades smiled, again something so simple, yet wondrous.

As he began to walk, Hades saw a mortal dwelling not too far distant and watched. He didn’t want to disturb them. Most mortals never seemed sure what to make of him and he had no desire to frighten them, as he watched them going about their daily business, washing clothes in a nearby stream, wringing and hanging them to dry, gathering food for their families, young lovers kissing in tall grass, couples embracing, children playing, making mud pies and he smiled to himself at the scene as he walked on through the soft grass.

It was late afternoon when he made his way back to the Underworld, arriving to find Persephone sitting by the table in their castle, eating as though there were no more tomorrows. She looked up at her husband, a tad contrite.

"So that’s where all the fruit went this morning," Hades mused. "If you keep that up, you’ll start to look like Bacchus."

Persephone scowled as she stood. "I was hungry." It was more an accusation than an answer.

"I can see that."

Persephone finished her large nectarine and whilst Hades wasn’t looking, reached for some pomegranate seeds.

Hades looked at the leftovers, and picked out a small star fruit.

"I’m sorry," Persephone said. "I was just hungry "

"Ravenous, more like," Hades said. "This table was full when I left."

"It’s not like we’re going to run out," Persephone snapped, conjuring up a table load of fruit and vegetables, some covering Hades’ arm. The Lord of the Dead withdrew it, wondering why his wife was so defensive.

Persephone grabbed two large pomegranates and an enormous mango before she left, scowling at her husband.

Hades seemed a tad bewildered. Maybe it was that time

The following morning, the table again was bare, spare a few green grapes and pomegranate seeds. Persephone was nowhere to be found. Hades shook his head as he waved his hand, more fresh fruit and vegetables appearing.

He wasn’t too surprised when he came back that afternoon to find the stone table all but bare and then a noise caught his attention.

Hades approached his wife, bent over, kneeling by the river Styx, vomiting like it was going out of fashion. He was somewhat concerned, though didn’t show it.

When she had finished, Persephone looked up to see her betrothed standing near.

"I feel sick," she said, stating the obvious.

"If you’re going to eat like a Cyclops, I’m not surprised."

Persephone screamed in annoyance, throwing a plum she had in her hand at her Husband’s face. Hades stopped it in mid air. Persephone stood annoyed, grabbed it and immediately began to eat it.

"I don’t believe you," Hades said. "You’re sick and you’re eating again."

Persephone huffed, pushed past him, and stormed back into the Castle.

Hades looked after her, quite bewildered.

The Goddess of Spring sat in her chambers, upset, eating pomegranate seeds. Hades came in to apologise. "You’re eating again "

"So?" Persephone demanded.

"You’ve already put on weight." //Zeus! Could you have been more tactless // It was a matter of fact, though Hades wished he could withdraw those words.

Furoius, Persephone shrieked, throwing a tomato at him, and this one he wasn’t lucky enough to avoid, though thankfully it didn’t splatter. Hades tried not to become annoyed. Something was obviously troubling his wife.

"Is that all you care about?" Persephone hissed, her eyes brimming with tears. "You won’t love me if I’m fat?"

"That’s not what I meant."

"What did you mean then? You said I was fat."

"I didn’t say that."

"Near enough!"

Hades approached her. Persephone’s angry expression made him stop, though he saw something else in her eyes. Fear and he became concerned, his features softening. "Persephone, what’s wrong? "

The Goddess of Spring looked into her Husband’s eyes, her anger and resolve disappeared as she sat on the bed. "Hades Hades I’m scared "

The Lord of the Dead sat next to her, taking his wife into his arms, any anger he had, vanished. "What is it, what’s wrong?"

Persephone sniffed ever so softly, feeling safe in her Husband’s arms.

"For the past few weeks, I haven’t been feeling well I..."

Hades looked at his wife, astonished. "Why didn’t you tell me?"

"You had other things on your mind this whole thing with Xena and Eve .. and "

"Ohh, Persephone, you should have told me, I could have done something."

"I I didn’t want to bother you with it I It’s nothing, really, I "

"If it’s nothing, then why are you so upset?"

Persephone didn’t have an answer and took a deep breath. Absent mindedly she ate some more pomegranate seeds. Hades said nothing as he gently kissed her cheek. "I’m sorry if I seemed to neglect you, my love."

"It’s not you," Persephone said "I don’t know what’s happening to me, I "

Hades held his wife as she cried, concerned though he waited until her sobs ebbed.

"Hades, I’m sorry I didn’t tell you. I I didn’t want to worry you."

"Instead you worried yourself."

Hades gently kissed his wife. "Tell me what’s wrong," he said, his voice calming.

"For for the past few weeks I’ve I’ve been sick Maybe it’s like you said, that I’ve been eating so much Maybe it’s my cycle " Persephone ate a large handful of pomegranate seeds. "I mean, this is the tenth pomegranate I’ve had today and I could eat ten more But I can’t help it . I feel so god damned hungry As though I can eat the entire world And then I get sick again and "

Hades looked at her. "You’ve been sick for the past few weeks, you say?"

Persephone nodded. Hades swallowed as he gently placed his hand under his wife’s white dress and over her stomach.

Persephone looked worried. Hades gave her a reassuring smile, although he was a tad nervous.

"There’s nothing to be worried about," he said. "It’s perfectly natural. You’re going to be fine."

Persephone trusted her husband and looked relieved, though a tad puzzled.

Hades looked at her. "You might want to kill me though."

A moment later, it sank in and the Goddess of Spring’s mouth feel open.

"You mean I’m . I’m "

Hades nodded slowly.

"Ohh my Gods "

"Well one of them, " Hades said.

Persephone managed a smile, then she laughed. "I was so worried And all the time "

Hades chuckled.

"Don’t laugh!" Persephone hissed, then smiled as she hit Hades with a carrot.

Her husband smiled as well. "So you don’t want to kill me then?"

"My mother might."

Hades paled.

"Don’t worry you are my Husband after all."

The Lord of the Underworld smiled as he gently embraced his wife.

"When did this happen?"

Hades swallowed again. "Looks like that time you snuck down here that one Summer Solstice "

Persephone gasped. "If my mother finds out about that, we’ll both be in the shite."

"So don’t tell her. I’m sure we can fudge something."

Persephone laughed. "I love you."

Hades kissed his wife. "And I you, My Love."

"So," Persephone said. "Do you think it’s going to be a girl or a boy?"

Hades smiled, giving a small shrug. "If she’s a girl you can name her."

"And if she’s a boy? What will you call her?"

Hades chuckled . "Can I sleep on it?"

Both God and Goddess smiled, embracing, lips touching lightly.

  • * * *

  • Months later far down in the Underworld, Persephone held her newborn children. Gently Hades played with his babies’ tiny hands, a tear running down his cheek as he sat next to his wife, and only now, holding his children in his arms, did he truly understand the love of a child and wondered how the Gods could have wanted to kill Xena’s baby, despite the prophecy, also understanding Xena’s connection and love for her child. Hades knew he would kill to protect his children, despite having known them for only a few minutes. Gently he kissed his wife, eternally grateful for her support, love and the beautiful children she had given him ~ they had given each other, as together they held their tiny wonders.

    "So what are you going to call her?" Hades asked, softly, smiling at his love. Persephone looked at her husband. "I’ve been thinking and thinking for the past few months now So many names, some lovely But none seemed to fit "

    A warm, loving and knowing wave caressed them.

    They knew not why at the time, the names had come to them, only that the significance would become apparent in the years to come and that their childrens’ Souls were eternal. Their Spirits would change the world.

    The God and Goddess of the Underworld named their daughter Excalibur.

    And their son Merlin.

     

    Hades and Persephone

     

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