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Xena Scroll Pouch #4
Dispatches from the Xena Restoration Society team that translated the Xena Scrolls
(as edited by Robert Mellette)

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Pouch 4: X.R.S. Correspondence
July 15, 1996 
Scrolls 4th Pouch -
Letter#: 51.5 Ep#: Subjects: Xena Restoration Society, Hollywood

Date: May 22, 1996
To: TeamUniversal
From:  Hasson
Re: The Fourth Pouch

Just a note to your readers before I return to the chronicle:

Please forgive my long absence.  I have been away on a world tour
to raise funds for the Xena Restoration Society.  While in the
United States, I had a chance to see the television version of
the Xena Scrolls.

What a long night that was.  The Dean of Antiquities at a certain
American University invited me over to his home to watch the
show.  His entire family, complete with children and
grandchildren, gathered around the TV.  First we watched
Hercules.  Well, I've pretty much resigned myself to the fact
that Hollywood has its version of the mighty hero, and history
has another.  Then Xena came on.

All I could think of during the show is, "what have I done?"
I've sold out.  I thought that by giving Hollywood more access to
our work, the end product would be more respectable.  I was
wrong.  They've turned this great new heroine of Greece into
a caricature figure.  Soon, I'm sure, children will be throwing
plastic Xena chakrams with some toy company's logo plastered all
over them.  There will be Xena Halloween costumes, Xena comic
books and Xena conventions without a single scientist in
attendance.  What have I done?

I had a long argument with the Dean that night, and as your
readers would probably be on his side, I will concede that he had
some good points to make.  But he sees mythology from a different
perspective than I.

As for me, I will continue to use this form to tell the story of
The Xena Scrolls, as it will go straight to those who need to
hear it most--the TV fans.  I hope they will find it as
entertaining as it is informative.

Now, where did I leave off?  Right.  Marvin was in lots of

******************Message Separator******************

Letter#: 52 Ep#: 76916
Subjects: Homer, Ares, Parchment 

Date: May 27, 1994
From: Mad Marvin
Re: The Homer Letter

Melinda here: I found this letter on Marvin's computer in his
office at Glyfada. Apparently, he had hit send, but the system
was off-line. He left without realizing that his letter never
went through, so I don't feel bad about re-sending it. I do feel
bad about him not being here. Janice, you especially will find
this letter interesting.

Here's my Idiom Translation. The complete,
all-hail-the-centimeters-fonts-Nomina- Sacra-of-the-academic-
halls-of-sticks-in-the-mud, are on their way to you by snail
mail. I just couldn't face retyping all of that stuff. So, here's

	Father: I've just had read to me the memories and stories of
	Gabrielle of Poteidaia, Best Friend of Xena: Warrior
	Princess, and sometime adventurer with Hercules. You remember
	her, Father, from Athens--from school. She's the one who
	taught me `to close my eyes, that I might see.' Well, here
	are the stories of her [and] her bes[t frie]nd, X[ena, and]
	their [adventures?]. I have learned through her, Father, that
	the truth is stranger, more fascinating, more intriguing,
	more worthy of the wonder and
	grandeur of the Arts, than what we can create with the ether
	our minds. 

	[section missing] 

	Irony--as you taught me so well, Father--is the proof that
	the gods watch over us, and so fits well into a story. Zeus
	and [all his children] must agree, for why else [in his
	wis]dom and all-too- measured mercy would he have sent this
	Poteidaian girl to cross my path? Surely Gabrielle is one of
	the muses. For none but a goddess could have foreseen my
	loss...[or] to [have] see[n] that the name she was so
	[instrumental?] in [pinning] on me, the [bli]nd ba[rd],
	[would be fitting] long before it was true? Father, you
	have given me so much, [and all] I could return [are some
	scribb]les on a page. I am not worthy to ask this favor of
	you, yet with my blind vision I can clearly see that I must.
	Copy, please, oh Father, these scrolls that [tell] the tale
	of X[ena:] W[arrior] P[rincess]. Give those scribes, whose
	labors you have focused on my po[or p]oetry, these prose to

	[two lines missing]

	[They] may not be in poetic form, and may not be [one
	and half lines missing] but [they are] honest and fun and
	exciting. Your loving son.

The colophons run almost throughout the letter, and seem to be
from the author's scribe to the father's scribe. The colophons
also give us some insight as to what might have happened to The
Xena Scrolls, even going so far as to suggest--hold onto
yourselves -- a CURSE!

Taken collectively, they read:

"Keep one eye on the Master as you relay this message, for [he]
is like to have anticipations that this letter will dash. Take
care that he dashes not in your direction!"

"This Poteidaian. She is kind and sweet, and will give you a
world of all her possessions (if she had any!),seems to follow
those who" [missing end of line].

"Now I do recall [from] where my suspicions run. It was before
my Master lo[st his sight, when le]tters from the Poteidaian
first did come. He read his own [correspondences?] then, but I do
recall that G[abrielle] had mentioned encounters with A[res,]
G[od of ] W[ar.] Not a long time afterward did his sight begin to
fade." "I feel the work of Ares here."

"There, the end of his ramblings. Thank the gods this letter
isn't one of his fantastic tales. Give my love to all. Don't let
my Master's Master get you down."

Well, I don't know about you, but I'm scared! We're reading a
work that has been cursed by Ares himself! Either that or Homer
had diabetes (or some other blind-inducing disease),

Mad Marvin
With bags packed, ready for the field.

Melinda here again: I miss him so much... I hope he's all right.

******************Message Separator******************

Letter#: 53 Ep#: Herc V0204
Subjects: Hercules, Hebrew Scrolls

Date: May 28, 1994
From: Belinski
Re: Marvin

That Marvin is an insane man! Someone should put him over their
knee and spank him!

We are two days into frantic digging to save his life, when he
comes strolling up like that American Bugs Bunny. If he had had
a carrot he would have been eating it and asking, "What's up,

As it turns out, he found a small hole deeper in the cave and
had dug himself out. After we had celebrated his safe arrival,
we all wanted to kill him for making us dig so long. Then he

"Oh, keep digging. There are more Xena Scrolls down there."

He is at the hospital now, nothing serious--minor exposure and
dehydration, some cuts and scrapes--so he won't post his findings
until tomorrow. All he told us was that there are three jars,
each containing a scroll. He snapped some photos of the jars,
then opened one and read what he could without disturbing it. He
said that these scrolls are different than the first set we
found. They mention Xena some... but Hercules much more.

We are still digging our way through the cave-in, and everyone
is happy that Marvin is okay--and especially excited about these
new Xena stories.


******************Message Separator******************

Letter#: 54 Ep#: Herc V0204
Subjects: Hercules, Hebrew Scrolls 

Date: May 28, 1994 
From: Covington 

That Marvin is an insane man! Someone should put him over their
knee and spank him!

I'd do it myself, but I think he'd like it too much!

American Bugs Bunny. If he had had a carrot he would have been
eating it and asking, "What's up, Doc?"

That's our Marvin. It's good to hear he's okay! I was literally
making plane reservations to go out there when I saw Boris'

All of my grandmother's old field equipment is packed and sitting
in my living room--and to tell you the truth, I'm tempted to
just go ahead and fly out anyway. Packing reminded me so much of
when I was a kid...

But no matter... there are tales of Xena to read!

"Oh, keep digging. There are more Xena Scrolls down there."

And even MORE tales of Xena... and Hercules! I can't wait.


******************Message Separator******************

Letter#: 55 Ep#: 76920 V0210 V0211
Subjects: Callisto, Joxer, Hebrew Scrolls 

Date: May 28, 1994
From: Costantakos
Re: Marvin and Callisto

I'll definitely spank him!

Then shake his hand, welcome him back to safety, and congratulate
him on his find!

Now, back to business. Araham, you're right about this Callisto
character. It's hard to tell who is who. I've looked through what
you've given me, and yes, I think there is more than one story

I've separated out elements of different stories but am having
terrible difficulty with segments such as:

"Her army was [as mer]ciless as her anger. All [of th]is village
died under her blade, save one old crone [who] was spared, not
for mercy's sake, but to tell [the world?] that this terror was
brought on by X[ena:] W[arrior] P[rincess]."

And that's all that remains of this fragment. The only thing that
makes me think this woman might NOT be Xena is that the fragment
was found in the middle of a story about this Callisto character
-- who seems to mirror Xena in many ways.

This paradox fascinates me, and may be unique in all of the Greek
Myths. Here we have a villainous character, Callisto, who was
turned to evil by the actions of our heroine--who spent much of
her life on an evil path for the same reasons as Callisto. "At
what price forgiveness?" seems to be the message here. One
passage reads:

"X[ena's] anger echoed in her ears, but this time [the voice]
came not from within, but from her former victim."pass judgment
on?? (the letters are legible, but do not break out into any
words I've seen before)] an evil so close to her own? Others had
forgiven X[ena], so should [she] now forgive C[allisto]?"

Most of the rest of this section has faded, but may show up under
ultra violent inspection. At the bottom there is a line that
clearly reads:

"X[ena] would live [and] die regretting [missing about 10
letters], and so would the W[oman] O[f] P[oteidaia.]"

Clearly, I have a load of work ahead of me! But it is a pleasant
labor. The fights between Callisto and Xena are quite exciting
-- and a character called Joxer keeps showing up who is very

If this continues, I'll have to pop some popcorn before I sit
down to my computer.


******************Message Separator******************

Letter#: 56 Ep#: V0208
Subjects:  Hollywood, The Lost Scrolls, Hebrew Scrolls 

Date: May 29, 1994
From: Hasson
Re: More New Scrolls

First, I spoke with Marvin on the phone. He is indeed alive and
well. He wouldn't tell me anything about the new scrolls except
to say that I wouldn't believe it, and would have to wait for his

But--on a different subject--I finally get to top Marvin with
a "you won't believe it story" myself.

Rob Tapert came to my office just after I had spoken to Marvin.
With all of this excitement, I had forgotten that he was visiting
this week. He is a very pleasant, frenetic, man who was genuinely
interested in all of the goings on at our lab.

I had to keep reminding myself that we don't own Xena, and that
if her story is going to be told, it is best that we help as much
as we can to tell it right. With that in mind, it was a very

But Rob had a surprise in store for us. After I had given him
a tour and Melinda had made him copies of the translations we
have done so far, Rob asked if I would take a look at something
for him. Of course I agreed, and he retrieved from his car an old
satchel full of scrolls! Now, I've only had a quick glance at
them, but I can tell you that these scrolls are also
opistographs, in the same hand, and on the same papyrus, as the
scrolls we're working with today. Rob said a braggart of a man
brought them into his office a month ago with some wild tale of
archeological adventure. 

Rob had dismissed it as another Hercules fan with a crazy idea
of making it big in Hollywood, so he forgot about it until he
had talked to Marvin.

Janice, I have to tell you that the story Rob told me--which
this man had told him--sounds exactly like the stories your
grandmother told me so many years ago. I brought Melinda in and
made Rob repeat the wild tales. Before long, tears of joy
down her face. Your grandmother and Melinda's grandmother might
not have been so crazy after all.


******************Message Separator******************

Letter#: 57 Ep#: Herc V020
Subjects: Hercules, Hebrew Scrolls, The Lost Scrolls 

Date: May 29, 1994
From: Mad Marvin
Re: The New Scrolls

Scrolls are popping up all over! Great news about the recovery
of the 1940's "lost scrolls."

On the "You're Not Going To Believe This" scale, that ranks way
up there--but I think I have a topper for you, Araham. The three
deals I found in the cave... Are... (get this) in Hebrew. Old
Testament-City! There is Hercules clear as day, right-to-left.
Toss your textbooks, folks! We're into a brave new world!

I suppose you want the whole cave story, huh? Here 'goes:

Okay--for those folks who have never been to a dig site, let
me tell you, it's BORING. Especially if you're not the one doing
the digging. Well, needless to say, your humble narrator was not
let near any digging equipment. So while I waited for the 7 &
7 to break out at the end of the day (the drink of choice for
team),thing lead to another, and I find myself winding down one
of the caverns, hoping to boldly go where no man has gone before.

No such luck. Man-signs everywhere. Then, just as I'm tossin'
the towel, the ground starts to shake! Dust is everywhere. I dove
for cover under a sturdy-looking ledge (like I'd know a sturdy
one from one that was about to fall on me!) and the ceiling

The shaking lasted about 20 seconds, but it felt like a lifetime.
Janice, I thought of you and the Northridge quake. Ain't nothing
like the real thing, baby!

The next few minutes were as scary as the shaking. The cave was
so full of dust that my flashlight was useless and I could hardly

I've never been a hanky-carrying kind of guy, but right then I
would have killed for one. I started searching my pockets and
pack for something to cover my nose and mouth, to filter out the
dust. Well low and behold, in my fanny-pack, I found--how do
I put this?--a pair of pantyhose. Never mind how they got there!
And I don't want to hear any jokes, `cause in the hours it took
the dust to settle, those pantyhose saved my life. I might have
looked like a fool, but I was a live one!

So there I am stumbling around with hose on my head, when I see
a light. I followed the light to a hole in a wall. When I cleared
away the rubble, I found a large, high-ceilinged, cavern. At the
top was the light source, a hole in the ceiling that let in a
beam of sunlight. The dust illuminated the beam, which fell on
the three strange jars. I swear, somewhere angels were singing
that "aw-aw" stuff from the old movies, `cause it looked like
God him (her, it) self was pointing to those jars ... and in
those jars were scrolls.

I had a small ruler and my camera, so I photographed everything
with the ruler in the shots for scale, then carefully opened one
of the jars. All I could read was:

"I sing of Hercules, strongest of men and gods.
And the wily ways of the woman warrior,
Who goes by the name of Xena."

Well, my heart almost stopped! Especially as these scrolls are
written in Hebrew. Had I had food and water, I might just have
sat down there and read them all. But, of course, that would have
ruined the integrity of the dig site--which I had done enough
of already.

Eventually, I was able to scale the walls of the cavern, and inch
my way through the hole at the top. Besides being really lost,
and hitchhiking a ride with some cute local girls back to the
campsite, the rest is kind of dull.

So--what did you guys do with *your* Summer vacations?

With a scab over every inch of my body.

******************Message Separator******************

Letter#: 58 Ep#:  Subjects: Authenticity -

Date: May 30, 1994
From: Hasson

We have been deceived.

At least that's the opinion of the peer review board.  And,
having studied their evidence, it's possible that I could agree
with them.

I am so full of shame, and anger, and an overwhelming feeling
that so much of my life has been a waste.  I hope that when all
is said and done, you can find it in your hearts to forgive me
for dragging you down with me.  I am truly sorry.

The peer review will be published next week.


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