((Ever wonder what happened after the H:TLJ episode, "Redemption"?))

"I've been here by myself for so long ...." she whispered, her blue eyes wide with recognition. Hope had never seen him in
person but she dreamt of him, had seen his majestic form a countless amount of times in the recesses of her imagination. He
was even more impressive in person. "I am so honored and overwhelmed."

"You ..." he spoke down at her through the fog of their dark-cold realm. The fury Dahak had felt only moments earlier,
when those two fools had fought and won their battle to the death with him, abated. "How is it possible ...?" he began.

The gentle lapping of a stagnant river could be heard about them. The blackened roots of dead trees pushed up through
sand and brown grass crumbled underneath their feet.

"I can't understand you." Hope whispered in loving awe as she continued to look upward at what others might call a monster
from their most vivid nightmare. Hope thought him beautiful. "The language you speak is eons old, before the time of the
Titans ...." Then she trailed off, watching its transformation. In a moment Dahak stood before her as a man, a golden haired
hunter, a good-looking mortal she recognized as Hercules' partner, Iolaus.

"Is this better?" he asked with a jovial smile. He then held his white robed arms open for her.

Eagerly, Hoped moved forward to be hugged by her creator. How cold he felt -- and it was wonderful! "Father ...." she

Dahak pulled her back, his eyes unintentionally devouring the girl. "When I first saw you," he said, "I thought you were your

"Mother." she whispered with an abrupt frown.

Dahak smiled indulgently, with slight amusement. "Oh yes," he reached a hand upward and touched his daughter underneath
her smooth chin, "She is deserving of your contempt but have pity, Little One. For when we get out of here she and the
others will be made to suffer untold agonies, the pain of everlasting damnation for what they have done to us." He then
looked Hope deeply in the eyes, "We will have our revenge."

The girl's expression brightened, "And we'll do it together, Father. Just you and I."

"Yes. Together." His hand moved from her chin to touch Hope's silky hair. His words dripped honey, "My biggest regret
was being forced away from you when Xena and your mother interfered with our mission. I was going to do so much for
you, Hope, furnish you with such powers ..."

"But you did save my life." she reminded, "You saved me from the fire when my own Mother wanted me dead. It was she
who eventually murdered me." Hope's bottom lip trembled, "She used your grandson, my child, he who was to bring about
your return, and made him kill me! But she didn't know the daughter of Dahak can never really die. She knows nothing!"

"Hush." Dahak held her close again, feeling his daughter's semi mortal body trembling in his immortal arms. There was far
more fury than grief behind the emotion. He liked that about Hope. Her selfishness. She really was Daddy's little half-
demon. "Gabrielle will pay an even higher penalty than the others." he assured and stared thoughtfully over Hope's shoulder.
"Even now my followers are reassembling, attempting to bring us back to our former glory. When that happens, Hope dear,
we'll begin again. It will be as it was with the Titans. But this time there will be no failure. The carnage will be ..." Dahak
looked upward as if envisioning those ancient times, coupled with his expectation for the future, with fond awareness, " ...

Hope pulled back a bit to look at him and she smiled, not as a daughter for her father but as a woman would a man, "*You*
are glorious." she whispered, gently running a hand up his white clad chest, watching her fingers as they slid over the silky
fabric. "My creator, my designer, my god, my father -- my love."

He placed his hand over her's, "We're going to annihilate the mortal world together, destroy all of its heroes, and make it
our own." Dahak murmured, his face very close to hers.

"All our own." Hope repeated, nearly breathless.

"And we will recreate that which was taken from us ..." he vowed, his eyes half closing at the exquisite thoughts entering
into his head. Mentally, he shared the images with Hope and was delighted when he saw the rapturous expression flash
across her pretty features.

Then, with purpose, Hope moved forward and kissed him directly on the mouth.

Another destroyer would be created.

A new terror had begun.


The End
December 2000

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