Author's Note: After seeing the "Twisted Princess: Maid Marian" by jeftoon01 and reading the back story of it, it really got me inspired to make this story!
Full credit of the initial idea goes to jeftoon01.
Hope everyone enjoys this attempt!
"I will meet you at the edge of the forest, by the main road. Wait for me there..."
"Robin...I'm frightened. I fear you will be mortally wounded. Or...even killed..."
"Marian, I promise I will come back to you. I swear on my life and love for you...that I will return safely."
Her lover caressed her cheek, wiping the tears away. He looked deeply into her brown eyes, showing the love and care he had for his lovely maiden. He told her once that he loved her more than life itself...and even gave her a flower engagement ring to prove it.
The ongoing struggle to free the people from Prince John's tyranny had been difficult, but Robin Hood knew this night would be the night of victory. With the help of Little John, he planned to take the gold usurped from the prince, and to break the townspeople from jail. Aside from this, the Sheriff of Nottingham had set the gallows for Friar Tuck to hang from.
It was up to Robin Hood and Little John to prevent these future happenings, and bring peace to England at last as soon as King Richard returned from leading the Crusades.
Robin had hoped to marry Maid Marian as soon as he returned back from the mission and once the rightful king had returned.
But, why was it so difficult to say goodbye...?
Marian threw herself into Robin's arms, crying softly into his chest. Robin felt his heart grow heavy...he didn't wish to leave her again, but he had no choice.
"Robin, please..." Marian whispered, "Please come back to me safely..."
"I promise, my darling. I will be back by dawn."
Marian lifted her head to look at his handsome face for the last time. He smiled gently, held her close, and kissed her gently on the lips. He always felt so warm and protective with his arms around her frail body. So strong, brave, daring...
The kiss was broken, Robin turning his head to the source of the voice. Little John was standing next to a tree, bow and arrows in hand.
"We have to get going. It's almost time to set the plan into action."
Robin nodded, turned back to Marian, and separated himself from her. Marian's temptation to not let him go from their embrace, to secretly follow him in the mission, to do anything so she knew he would be safe...it was almost too much to bear.
He kissed his lover's cheek and hand before he left through the woods with Little John, looking back at her for the last time before her figure was hidden behind the trees.
Maid Marian looked up at the cloudy sky, not a single star in sight due to the storm that floated above Nottingham.
More tears streamed down her cheeks as she closed her eyes, whispering a hope, a prayer, that lingered deep in her heart until now.
"Please let Robin Hood return with the others...I will be waiting for him until then..."
Maid Marian waited...and waited...
Her patience was growing thin, but she knew the plan was going to be difficult. The ground she sat on was wet and becoming very uncomfortable, her feet were sore from pacing back and forth for hours. Her neck ached from constantly turning towards Prince John's castle, worried about Robin Hood's safety. If she had to guess, he and Little John would be returning to the planned meeting place in a few minutes with the townspeople, and Prince John's gold, in a few more minutes.
She then felt her eyelids feeling heavy, and she decided to lean against a tree, hidden from road in case royal guards were patrolling it. She slid to the ground and slowly allowed herself to drift to sleep. Until...
...She heard the sound of a cart rolling by quickly. She awoke suddenly, and rushed to the road to see the cart stopping, loaded with the poor of Nottingham. She approached the cart from the front as the people began to climb out, bags of gold in each hand. She breathed a sigh of relief; the mission was successful. But, she couldn't see Robin Hood, or even Little John for that matter...
Marian saw Friar Tuck at the back of the cart, and she ran to meet him.
"Friar Tuck! Thank goodness you all made it! Is everyone alright?"
The friar nodded his head and took her hand to greet her, "Yes, we are all alright..." But a concern was expressed in his aging face.
Marian felt worry consume her, "What happened, friar?"
"...A young child...was left behind."
Marian gasped, glancing at Skippy who was staring back towards the castle, as if he was searching for something, or someone, to come from that direction. Marian stood next to him, Skippy never turning his head to acknowledge her presence.
"Where is Robin Hood and Little John? What happened?" She asked.
Skippy hesitated before he answered, "Mr. Robin Hood...went back to save my little sister...he's a true hero..."
Marian took Skippy's hand gently, following his gaze to the castle. Tears welled up in her eyes, her worry overcoming any other emotion she felt. A few seconds later, Skippy's ears perked up and his eyes widened.
"There they are!"
Coming down the road, Little John was running with the child in his arms. the mother took her child, hugging and kissing and thanking Little John for his heroic deeds. Panting, he noticed Marian standing nearby with Skippy.
"Maid Marian! Rob...he's..."
She allowed him to catch his breath before he finished, "What happened to Robin, Little John? Is he...?"
He swallowed hard, "Rob's...stuck in...Prince John's castle...Everyone's after him! He's trapped...he's got no way out...!"
Worry immediately developed into panic.
Eyes widened and breath hitched, Marian tried to run to the castle but only to have Little John grab her wrist tightly.
She struggled in his strong grip as she cried out, "Let go of me! I'm afraid he will get killed! Little John, unhand me!"
"Marian, no! It's too dangerous to go back there! You're sure to get caught and hurt, or even dead! Robin would never forgive himself if anything like that happened..."
He didn't understand. He couldn't understand. The love of her life was in great peril, and she didn't want to just sit back and watch from the distance anymore.
She clenched her fist in Little John's grip, her anger and fears sweeping over her like the thunderstorm from earlier that night.
"I said unhand me...now!" She screamed. Little John, caught by surprise from her unexpected outburst, suddenly released her and she sprinted into the forest towards the direction of Prince John's castle. Skippy stood by in amazement. Someone with such powerful love was determined to have her mate by her side once again, and nothing was going to prevent her from letting that happen.
Little John turned to Friar Tuck and issued orders, "Take everyone further into the forest. We can't afford anyone getting captured by the guards again!"
The friar nodded, escorting the townspeople into the forest to further safety.
It was all Maid Marian could see as she hid behind the trees by the castle moat. Her clothes now contained tears and rips from the tangled bushes and the bottom was covered in dark mud, and Little John had immediately caught up with her to see a horrific sight above them.
Robin Hood was trapped on the roof of the royal chambers, the flames almost ready to swallow him up. Prince John was constantly pointing and screaming at his archers to shoot at him before he even dared to escape.
"Shoot him, you fools! Kill him, kill him!"
The fire had grown quickly over a matter of moments, Robin attempting to shield off the flames but to no avail. He had not expected to be left behind to deal with the royal guards and the Sheriff of Nottingham alone. No matter where he went to hide, a guard was present with his bow drawn. This was not going according to plan...and he was afraid. The people of Nottingham were now safe in Sherwood Forest, but now his own life was on the verge of death. If only he could have seen his love once again...
Startled by hearing the sound of a voice calling his name over the roaring flames, he frantically searched for whoever it was. He then saw a female's silhouette along the banks of the moat.
His lovely Maid Marian!
His heart leaped at the sight of her frightened but beautiful face, and he suddenly remembered the promise he made her earlier that night, "Marian, I promise I will come back to you. I swear on my life and love for you...that I will return safely."
The pain and sweltering heat from the vicious fire, the fear he felt inside of himself...it all vanished at the sight of her. He made a small grin, leaping off of the tower as far away as possible, and diving into the moat below him.
Prince John jumped up and down, shouting "Kill him! Kill him while he is vulnerable!" Sir Hiss slithered beside him, staring in awe at what just happened. There was no way he could have survived such a leap off of that height. Now was their chance to shoot him and finish him off!
A shower of arrows fell from the castle walls, entering the water at ferocious speeds towards the outlaw. He surfaced the water as soon as the arrows came falling down all around him. He panicked, searching for Maid Marian and Little John on the shore until he heard her voice again.
"Robin! This way, my love!"
The water in his eyes and the pain from his burns disoriented him, causing him to blindly swim to shore. He struggled to stay afloat, and floods of arrows continued to rain down on him.
Marian watched in horror as her lover grew more exhausted from trying to escape. She wanted to help him, to dive in with him and help him to safety, but Little John's grip on her arm forbade her to go out there...
She suddenly saw Robin Hood's body tense, his face depicting excruciating pain.
An arrow struck him in the back of the left shoulder.
Another suddenly hit the middle of his back, barely missing his heart.
Marian, tears flowing down her face, screamed his name again as he lost consciousness and sank to the bottom of the moat. She felt her own heart being torn to pieces as she saw her lover's body be pierced by the merciless blades. She tried pulling herself from Little John's grasp, but Little John held her back from getting herself killed from Prince John's archers. At this point, the Sheriff of Nottingham joined the prince and his adviser along the castle wall, smiling that evil smile he always wore...
Little John could see the fear and anger in Maid Marian's eyes, and he could feel it as well. He knew he had to something...for her sake and Nottingham's sake. He let Marian's arm go, and dove into the moat's murky waters to rescue his companion, while Marian watched anxiously.
It seemed like hours to her as she watched more arrows pursue the outlaws underwater. She was then startled to see Little John resurface, gasping for air with a wounded Robin Hood in his arms. He reached the shore, and quickly escorted Marian back into the forest.
"We need to get out of here, my lady! Rob's badly hurt, but safe now...and we need to meet up with the others as soon as we can! There's nothing else we can do here, except escape from the prince's guards. We have to leave now!"
Marian, at a loss for words and her mind and memory in a blur, only nodded and continued crying as she noticed Robin's own blood staining Little John's forest-green clothing...
Please understand it's difficult to make an initially cutesy Disney movie into a dark one, so I needed a LOT of inspiration for this!
Appropriate music to listen to to fit the mood of the story, constant referencing to the drawing by jeftoon01 for further details, all of that stuff!