Marian smiled, and she brushed back Robin's hair. "You need to chop those atrocious bangs," she commented. He shrugged. "It adds to my mysterious aura."

Marian giggled. "That was what the hood was for, moron. If anyone sees those dark bangs, they'll know our darling lord's son is a fake," she told him. "Oh, I should dearly miss my pompous alter ego," Robin replied sarcastically. Marian giggled again. "If not you, than I," she replied, still giggling infectiously. Robin rolled his dark eyes dramatically. "What I must deal with," he groaned, sounding utterly Norman. Marian laughed aloud this time, and her typhoid ecstasy rolled through Sherwood, bouncing off the trees with a force. "Hush, Mari," Robin rebuked, placing two fingers gently over her lips. She smiled at him through closed mouth.

Will rolled his eyes at both of them. "Robin, Marian's father is looking for her," he informed them. Marian bolted upright. "Damn it!" she cried loudly, and went to leave. Robin began to clamp a hand over her mouth, but she stood up, and he was left on the ground by the tree. Marian threw her arms around Will. She always hugged the outlaws when she left, for none of them ever knew if they would see each other again. He smiled down at her. Robin stood up, and Marian squeezed him. "I shall see you on the morrow," she whispered gleefully. Then she ran out of the glade to find all her other wolf's head friends.

Will glanced at Robin. 'You twit," he said, "You still have not told her you love her, have you?" Robin grinned merrily at him. 'Nay," he replied, but there was ecstasy in his face, as if secret loves were far superior to others. Will rolled his eyes. "It will be your downfall, cousin," he said. Robin laughed. "Then Sarah shall be yours," he returned.

*************

Marian stepped into the manor house to find it dark. "Hello?" she cried. None of the candles were lit. "Jeremy?" she called frantically for the steward, but he did not answer her. "Anna? Lee? Gatty?" she questioned, begging for one of the servant girls to answer her frantic pleas. None replied. She traveled through the darkness to the main hall. Someone had lit a candle in there. Thank Heavens.

Richard leered at her as soon as she entered. Marian screamed and grabbed for her sword. He placed a calming hand over her own, and she faltered, leaving the sword immobile. "I would wait before that action, lady," he told her. She spat on him. "Where is my father, you boar?" she screamed. He grinned. "I am afraid, my dearest, that the sheriff has" - he paused - "been forced to take some action in regard to the immense debts you father owes. He will be thrown in the dungeons for a few years. I am grievously sorry for-"

"You are not sorry for anything, you son of a pig!"

"My lady, I-"

"He is an old man! He will not last in the sheriff's dungeons! There is no chance for him, Richard! He shall perish, surely he shall!"

Richard smiled. She had fallen for it. In her foolish feminine worries for the old man, she had fallen straight into his plot. "There may yet be a way to save him," he whispered. Marian looked up at him. "I will do it," she replied.

Perfect.