I have tried to upload this, but the system erased it, I was so angry I was not going to write it all over again, but I will try to remember all I wrote and try a second time...hope this works this time, and this will be it...I will miss your reviews. I love the series and this is my way of remembering my fav characters till September/October...I will miss Marian and I hope W/D will come back even if it is mid-series...
The king is coming!
- The king is coming! The king is coming! -A small boy was shouting while he ran like crazy through the streets of Nottingham. He couldn´t be more than six years old, but the years of hunger and the lack of proper medical care had made all this generation to look smaller than they should. His face and hands were covered in mud, caked in it, as he had been playing with some friends near the road when he saw the horses coming.
His mother was waiting for him at the door of their humble cottage. Her face was a mixture of emotions.
- Davie, How many times do I have to tell you not to shout on the streets? People need some peace and quiet after all these years of fear -She told the boy.
- But, mom, the king is coming, I saw him with my very eyes -The boy protested.
- I know, Davie, you can´t run as fast as a horse -She smiled- The king is already in the castle, we have all seen him.
- Isn´t he tall, mom? And very strong? I think he is taller than any man I have ever seen -The boy
- The noblemen are with him in the castle and guess who else has been invited -The mother continued.
- Robin Hood! -The boy shouted
- Don´t shout, Davie, Do you ever listen to me? -She said- Yes, Robin, but he is not Robin Hood anymore, he is now Robin of Locksley, don´t forget that. He will get his lands back and we will get a new sheriff real soon. Things are changing, Davie, wait and see.
In the castle...
The king was watching the town from one of the broken windows of the rooms of the sheriff, his hands crossed behind his back. He was ashamed of all the poverty and hunger he had witnessed in the streets as he arrived to the castle. Kids were mere skeletons, with dirty faces and rag dolls and the adults were not looking much better. He heard a noise and, without turning around, said:
- Robin, come here, with me.
- Enjoying the view, your Majesty? -Robin walked towards the window- We broke it so many times the sheriff left it like this.
- I am in debt with you -The king said- This is worst than what I have tought. Much worse.
- Now, we will be able to make the people forget their sufferings -Robin assured him- people need a fair king and a hot meal to enjoy life again.
- I know you are still angry with me for not forcing my younger brother, prince John, to admit his crimes and sending him into exile for what he has done to my country -The king uncrossed his hands.
- I understand, he is your brother -Robin nodded- I have a family and I will always forgive them anything and give them all the chances in the world.
- I had no idea you had brothers, Robin, I always thought you were an only child -The king looked intrigued.
- I have been blessed with five brothers, a sister and a lovely niece -Robin asnwered- Family is the only thing that matters in the end.
- Yes, but I will keep an eye on him from now on, he won´t be able to play the same tricks on me a second time, that I promise you - Richard the Lionheart moved away from the window- And I cannot understand why you won´t let me execute the sheriff. You see, Robin, he is a traitor to me and to this country. He has tried to kill twice, he was part of a plot to stole my kingdom, and he had killed my people, by sword or hunger. He deserves to be hanged.
- Trust me, your Majesty, I know better than anyone that he deserves to be hanged, but to be punished in the Tower of London, alone, without power, for the rest of his life is going to be his worst nightmare, just what he deserves -Robin added- Have you tought about my proposal?
- About Much and Bonchurch? -The king asked- Of course, I see no problem in that.
- No, your Majesty, I was talking about ...-Robin was interrupted by the sound of a tiny infant that came in half-running, half-crawling. It was a mess of clothes, curls and pieces of pastry, rolling in the direction of Robin.
- Roooin! -The baby called his name and a huge smile appeared on his face. He kneeled down and opened his arms to hug the little one and carry her.
- She is really something -The king smiled- but you are spoiling her too much, Robin.
- Her mother thinks the same but I don´t care, she is my princess -Robin kissed her head- You will have to excuse me, your Majesty, I better take this little girl to her mother before she tries to kill uncle Allan again for not taking good care of her. She is a master at escaping authority and hiding away.
- The natural heir of the famous outlaws -The king nodded- Go on, I will joing you in no time. I have some announcements to make.
Robin saw her in the corridor, hiding in shadows, dressed with that same beautiful white dress she was wearing when they got married.
- How is the king? Is he happy to be back home? -Marian asked passing next to them and making faces to make the baby laugh.
- Yes -Robin was carrying the baby down to the great hall- Do you think she will always be able to see you?
- No -Marian shook her head- Babies are so innocent that they can see it all, but she will grow up and forget me. One day she won´t see me anymore.
- Will I see you forever? -Robin asked. She laughed and moved down the other corridor.
- Forever -Her voice caressed his face. Then she was gone, but Robin knew that she was always there, with them.
The great hall was decorated with garlands and fresh flowers, it was all very beautiful, but John and Allan were feeling a bit uncomfortable, specially with a Sarracen crazy woman shouting at them for losing AGAIN the baby.
- She is like this size, small, tiny. How can you lose something like that? -She was asking them, waving her hands around.
Will was looking at them, finding it very funny this time because, for once, it wasn´t him who had lost her. That girl was impossible to control, he wasn´t very worried now, although the possibility that she would do the same things in the future was not so funny. She was going to be a beauty, with the dark skin and black curls she had inherited from her mother and her green eyes, a gift from the Scarletts. She was quiet but had a temper that could tear down walls. He could understand Djaq´s desperation with the baby but Will knew the real problem would start after her fifteenth birthday. He couldn´t blame his daughter, she had been born in a cave, and since that moment she had been always on the run, escaping guards, hiding everywhere. She had been kidnapped once and was rescued shortly after. For her, life was a constant movement. But things were about to change for his family. These last year and a half has been hard with a baby and all, but things were getting better. He was going to build a house in Locksley and live in peace.
- Have you lost something? -Robin´s voice thrundered from the stairs, the gang raised their head and saw him carrying the baby- Allan you have to be more careful, one of these days she could really get lost.
- With the noise she makes, we will always find her in no time -Allan took the baby from Robin´s arms- Hey, young lady, you can´t keep on escaping when I am looking after you, your mom know how to kill a man in ten thousand different ways...well, now that I think about it, your mom´s skill will come handy when you start dating...
- Allan, give her to me- Djaq ordered- And be quiet, the king has arrived.
- My dear friend, I am here today to ask you to forgive me -The king started talking- All this time I thought I was fighting for England while my people were dying of hunger and disease. I should have know that the best way to defend a country is to live in it and know first-hand the problems that the people have. The reign of terror of my brother and his black knights is over, and life will be once a again what it used to be; I, King Richard, will see to that. I am here today not only to ask you to forgive me but also to reward the brave men and women that fought for me, because without them I wouldn´t be here, they managed to send a small fortune to my mother, enough to rescue me three times over. My life was saved by them and I will always be in their debt. Robin Hood, come forward, my dearest friend. From this day on, you will be called Sir Robin of Locksley, Earl of Huntingdon. You can return to your house and to take care of your people. I am sure tonight there will be a great celebration at Locksley Hall. Now, Much, also known as Much the servant, come forward. Without you my outlaws would have perished of hunger and cold. You have taken good care of my soldiers and have proved to be a strong and brave soldier yourself. I am proud to call you, from this day on, my friend, Sir Much of Bonchurch. Be as fair and kind with your people as you have been with your friends.
Much smiled and hugged Robin. Finally, he was getting Bonchurch.
- And we will be their servants -Allan grumbled in a low voice.
- At least fat face won´t kept on talking about Bonchurch - Little John added.
- I wouldn´t count on that -Djaq was so happy for their friends, she let the baby waved her little hands in the air- Say hi to uncle Robin and Much, they are noblemen now, say hi, Marian.
- I have been thinking for a long time about who should be the next sheriff. This town has suffered more than any other in the country. A cruel man enslaved my people, killing them for fun and cutting tongues to obtain information -The king continued.
- I never really understood that trick -Allan commented.
- I have heard many names, everyone knows someone that could be a good sheriff, or a fair one, or a strong one, but I know who is the perfect person for this job. I need a strong man, a person ready to die fighting for what he believes, a man who is still young and wants to change things for the better. A man that believes in the people, and wants to protect every single person -The king continued.
- I bet he has decided that Robin should be the sheriff -Luke said, from his place, behind his brother.
- Will Scarlett, son of Dan Scarlett, can you please come forward? -The king asked.
Will looked puzzled at Djaq and then at Robin. Both were smiling and Allan pushed him towards the king.
- Well done, my friend -Allan said proudly, moving closer to Luke.
- Will Scarlett, I once told you that your courage deserved a reward, but this is not an easy job -The king said- I know that you are strong and skillfull, and that you prefer to build than to destroy. I trust you but now, you have to tell me if you do accept this job.
Will searched the crowd, looking for Djaq´s eyes. She was telling him to go ahead, to say yes.
- Your Majesty, this is an honour, but I am nothing more than a carpenter. This morning I was thinking of going back to my village, to work with wood and raise my family. I will accept your offer, but I want you to know that I am nothing more than a carpenter -Will said humbly.
- You are many more things -Robin said- You are a loyal friend, a great father, a fantastic carpenter and a good man. Not a lot of people can say that.
- I think your family will be okay in the castle, in fact, now that I see it, I think this place needs a feminine touch -The King agreed.
- And we can turn the torture chamber into a place for the pigeons -Djaq said. Allan rolled his eyes. What was with this woman and those damn rats with wings? Allan made a face for little Marian and the baby laughed.
- Then, It´s settled, Will Scarlett is the new sheriff of Nottingham -The king announced- But I haven´t forgotten the other three great warriors. My mother talked a lot about the big man that so bravely transported the money to Aquitaine. John Little, you are a strong man, a person I can trust. I will need a guardian for the forest. Now there won´t be any need to have outlaws in the woods, as we have a good sheriff in the castle. But we need to protect the woods. I think you are the man I am looking for. I will order that a huge mansion shall be built there for you and your family if you agree to be the guardian of Sherwood. The house should be as big as my gratitude for helping me and for enduring my mother´s attempts at romance, she keeps talking about her "Big Bear".
Little John had no words. This was like a dream come true. Alice had always been the lady of the forest in his imagination, and now it was going to become true. He nodded silently, afraid of saying something wrong. After all, he was a simple man. Allan patted him on the shoulder, grinning.
- And you, mister Allan-A-Dale, I have heard so many storied about you -The king looked at him.
- Rumours, my Majesty, sorry, your Majesty -Allan replied quickly, raising his eyebrows- I was not really working for Gisborne, you see, not being funny here, but I did switch bands when I heard you life was in danger, I was never a black knight, not even gray...
- Relax, my friend, I think the punishment in the desert was enough for that -The king laughed- You are one of Robin´s men and therefore one of my friends. I have been thinking that your friend, mister Scarlett will have too much work here and he will need a Master of Arms, a good one, to train the guards and keep an eye on tax collectors. I have heard that you have some insight on this particular job as you used to spy on the old master of arms.
Allan looked at Robin, because he wasn´t spying back then, no, he had been a traitor and had really worked for Gisborne. Robin nodded, this was the way he showed him that all that was definitely in the past. Allan felt relieved and grateful.
- And you my young friend -The king looked at Luke.
- There is no need, your Majesty -He replied- I am satisfied with being a carpenter in my old village, and help my brother now and then. I do not need anything more.
- Are you sure? -The king asked.
- Yes, I have all I need here, and I am sure my father and mother are proud and pleased in heaven -Luke asnwered.
- Well, then, so be it. You will work rebuilding Locksley and I will make sure you get a good salary out of it. I will also commission you a huge house in Sherwood for "Big Bear", and a nice cottage for you in Locksley. I will pay it all -The king raised his arms- Now, lets celebrate, my friends.
- A sheriff -Djaq kissed Will surprised face- Who would have thought I was marrying the sheriff of Nottingham.
- Well, it´s an opportunity, we will build schools, you will teach the children to read and write with Friar Tuck and I will make sure things go back to normal and stay like that -Will said full of anticipation- I will make this a good place for our little one to grow up.
Allan was playing with the girl, she was sitting on his knees and laughing at his jokes.
- My dear Marian Lardner Scarlett -He cradled her- We are going to be just fine, you and me and mommy and daddy all living in this ugly castle. You´ll see.
- Marian? -The king overheard and looked at Robin.
- Yes, Djaq and Will decided to call her Marian if the baby was a girl, as a way of remembering her -Robin said proudly.
- ¿And Lardner? -The king asked intrigued- It is a weird name for a girl.
- Long story -Robin smiled- Djaq was a bit confussed after giving birth, Will wanted her to chose the second name, he was so proud of her after all the shouting and pain she had endured, and asked her what second name she wanted. Djaq swears she can´t rememer saying Lardner, but that is what she said and Will wasn´t sure if she was actually pulling his leg again or not, so he decided to do as she said and called her Marian Lardner Jane Scarlett.
- An amazing name for an amazing girl -The king raised his goblet of wine and everyone did the same
- For England!
And that is it...hope you have liked it...I will miss you, but please leave a last review if you have liked the fic. I have loved doing it and we will see each other again soon, I am sure.