I love Braveheart, and being of Scottish descent, the story has always intrigued me. This is my effort to retell the story portrayed in the film, and add my own little twist to things
Sadly I do not own Braveheart or anything connected to it, however Alaine Campbell is my own creation.
The wool wrapped around Alaine's eyes itched. She carefully shifted her weight, freeing one of her hands. She slowly raised her hand and slipped a finger under the blindfold. The rough fibers caught at her skin, but finally the cloth was shifted so that it no longer bothered her. Just as carefully, Alaine slipped her hand down and back behind her.
She was suppose to be the Scottish princess captured by English knights. Alaine hated being the princess. Being the princess meant she was blindfolded and had to lie in the hay in the lean-to behind her father's croft. It was unfair that Hamish and William got to run around pretending to be the English knight and the Scottish warrior, battling for her. Alaine wanted to be the warrior and let one of the boys be blindfolded and left in boredom.
"Arrrggh!" With a cry the door to the lean-to burst open. Alaine twitched, wishing desperately to see who her rescuer would be. She could feel one of the boys drop into the hay beside her.
"Don't worry Princess. Tis me, William. I've coom to save yee." William's small hands reached behind Alaine and pretended to untie binding ropes. Alaine struggled to sit up, hay drifting in the air around them. She tugged at the blindfold, finally free of the confounding thing.
William beamed at the messy princess, his blue eyes gleaming with the excitement of an adventure. "See Alaine, I've saved yee. I killed Hamish, an here I am."
Alaine sighed frustratedly. "Thank yee William. Can I be the warrior next? Let Hammish be the princess. I doon't wanna be the princess any more." Alaine's tone strayed into whining with her last words but the affect was lost on William.
"You, be a warrior? That kin never happen. You're a girl. Girl's doon't fight." His face screwed up, trying to comprehend the thought of a female warrior.
"Fine then. You an Hamish can play alone. I'm goin' inside." Alaine huffed and struggled to her feet. Without one last look, she stomped out of the hay pen, brushing dirt and dust from her skirts.
"Oy, where might you be going?" Hamish had been outside, lying on the ground, his 'sword' lying to one side.
"Here, you be the princess." And with that, Alaine threw the blindfold at her brother and stormed into the croft.
Alaine spent the rest of the day sulking inside. She ignored any of her mother's inquiries as to what was bothering. Her mother just shook her head. "Tis your bright hair. You carry your father's hair and his temper, you and your brother both."
The day had been a rare one when Da had traveled to another croft conducting business of some sort, leaving Hamish and Alaine at the farm, with nothing to do after his chores were finished. William's father and brother had gone with the elder Campbell, and so had left young William at the Campbell croft for the day. It was some time after dinner when the three men returned. Malcolm Wallace exchanged quiet words with Alaine's Ma before carrying the sleeping William with him home.
Hamish had fallen asleep some time before, but Alaine had stayed up, waiting for her father to come home. This business of not being able to fight bothered her. If Hamish and William were allowed, then so should she be.
"Da?" Alaine crept from under her blankets and came to stand by her father's side. Her mother glanced at her, a scold rising to her lips, but after seeing the child's face, she kept the words inside and turned back to fixing her husband's meal.
"Come her Little Bit." Da reached down and lifted Alaine to his knee. At seven years she was still just able to fit on his lap. "Come and tell me what's bothering you."
"Ham and Will always make me be the princess. I hate being the princess. I wanna be the warrior instead. But Will said girls canna fight." Tears came to Alaine's eyes. She desperately wanted to be included in what Hamish and William were allowed to be.
Da through back his head and laughed. Alaine loved it when her father laughed for it sounded deep and rich, and it made his eyes sparkle with some hidden joke.
"So my Little Bit wants to fight then." Da seemed rather taken with the though.
"Ham. Don't encourage her. Malcolm's boy is right. Girl's don't fight." Alaine's mother turned and set a bowl of stew down in front of her husband. "We wield needles instead of swords. We fight with words and looks, not with weapons. Hamish Campbell, I swear if you start teaching her how to fight, I will leave you before the next morn."
"Gerda, now don't start with me. You know as well as I do that Aliane is ill suited to needles and the like. Why she's burnt everything when she's set her hand to cooking. And she's going to need to know how to fight with her mouth. You've heard the things that have coom out of there before. Besides love, that business of mine today. Well things aren't looking good. The Lords are meeting with the English tomorrow, and I have my doubts about the whole thing. We're going to have to fight, and it's going to take all of us to do so."
Da sat back slightly winded. That was possibly the longest speech he had ever made, but the shining look in his daughter's eyes made it all the worth while.
Gerda hung her head. She knew when she had been beaten.
"Fine then. Teach her to fight and then see what becomes of her when we canna find her someone to marry."
It was settled then. Alaine would be trained in the art of war next to her brother. But upon the next day the Scottish Lords were betrayed and were killed. The Highland crofts rose up including the Wallaces and the Campbells. William was left to tend his father's croft and to keep an eye out for their return. His father and his brother returned, but instead of coming back on horses they rode off on, they came lying in the back of a wagon, slain by the English.
The English tightened their rule over Scotland, preventing any further uprisings. The patriots kept their movements secret and their cause was kept silent. Willaim was led off by his uncle to parts unknown. Alaine and Hamish were trained by their father, just as he promised.
Time passed and freedom became a passing thought. It grew dormant in the people's hearts. It began a long game of waiting; waiting for the one to wake it once more and lead the people to victory……