Water… Thunder… More water… cold. Ice cold. And out of breath.
A young peasant boy came out of the house and started to walk down to the small river with a bucket in each hand.
“Ellie come on! I need some help with these!” He called over his shoulder. His younger sister came running towards him.
“I’m coming, I’m coming!” She said and grabbed one of the buckets. The small river did not lie very far away from the house. They ran the last bit and laughed together.
Ellie’s brother Peter went into the water so it was up to his ankles and started to fill the first bucket. When the bucket was full, he handed it over to little Ellie.
“Here, give me the empty one” Peter said and waited for Ellie to take the heavy water filled bucket.
As Ellie took it, she looked over to the other side of the small river and her mouth went wide open as she dropped the bucket to the ground. The water ran back into the river.
“Why did you do that for?” Her brother asked rather annoyed and grabbed the bucket again.
“Look Peter, over there!” Ellie said and pointed to the other side.
Peter turned his head and looked in that direction but could not see anything. “What are you talking about, where?”
“Right there!” she said and started to run to the large stock lying right across the river. She quickly went over and ran towards something dark that laid half on the ground and half in the water.
It was a man.
Ellie bent down beside him and tried to turn him over on to his back. He was all wet and had some small bruises across his face.
“Peter, he is breathing!” she called to her brother and he ran towards the house to fetch their father.
“Why is he not moving? Is he dead? He is really pale. I do not think he is feeling very well…”
Peter hushed his sister and put another blanket around the man’s still cold body. His leather outfit was hanging to dry in front of the fire and he had gotten some of the children’s father’s old clothes to wear.
Ellie and Peter sat quietly on the floor, watching as the man’s chest slowly rose and fell, he was laying in one of the spare beds the family had in their small house.
“Maybe he is a prince… From another country!” Ellie began.
Peter let out a sigh and looked at his sister.
“What?” Ellie asked. “You actually do not know everything about everyone just because you are older than me!”
The children’s father came into the room, went over to the bed and tried to listen if he had made any progress in his breathing.
Ellie stood up, went over to her father, and climbed up on the bed next to the man. She put her ear against his chest and listened to his heartbeat. It did not beat very fast, but fast enough to tell that he was alive. Ellie let out a small laugh and looked up at her father.
“I think he is a prince,” she said. “He looks like a prince…”
Her father smiled at her and sat down next to her.
“No, he is not a prince. This is the Sheriff of Nottingham’s master-at-arms.”
“The Sheriff of Nottingham? Who is that?” Ellie asked.
“You know, the small ugly almost-bald man that rules over Nottingham.”
“Ah, the one that is missing a tooth!” Ellie said with a big smile, pointing at one of her front teeth.
“That is the one,” her father said, picking her up in his arms and rose. “Now it is time for you two to go to bed,” he said and looked at his son and daughter. The three of them exited the room while a candle burned on the small table next to the bed. And they closed the door very quietly behind them.
Nottingham Castle lay quiet in the sunset. The guards walked around the castle and did their usual business; trying not to run into the Sheriff.
The Sheriff was in his room, playing with one of his birds. He looked the bird in the eyes and patted it carefully on the head. He then turned his own head towards the door.
“Guards!” he yelled. Three guards stormed in and had their swords drawn out.
“Oh! Put them down! You idiots are scaring my birds!”
“Sorry, Mylord,” one of them said and they put the swords away. “What can we do for you, Mylord?” the same guard asked.
Vasey put his bird into the cage and went away from where he was sitting. “Have you seen Gisborne?” he asked.
“No, Mylord. Nobody has seen him since he rode after Robin Hood…” the other guard said nervously.
Now the Sheriff was very irritated. “That fool!” he yelled and slammed his fist into the table. “Find him, now!” he roared. And the guards disappeared within the blink of an eye.
Aaah… my head..! Oh God. Am I dead? I cannot feel my legs…
Guy opened his eyes very carefully and tried not to move. But that was hard because he could feel something or someone breathing, very close, almost too close… He slowly turned his head and looked straight into the eyes of a very young girl.
“Hello!” she said with a big smile on her face.
“H…Hello…” Guy said.
“My name is Ellie! What is your name?” she asked as she sat right next to him on the bed.
“M-my name? …My name is… is…” he started. I cannot remember my name… Who am I?! Where am I?
“I… do not have a name…” Guy said and looked at the little girl.
“What?! Then, what do people say when they are calling at you?” Ellie asked almost shocked.
God… Why did I have to say that? Guy let out a sigh and tried to sit up. He mumbled from the pain and closed his eyes hard as he rested against the bedpost. He then looked at the girl again.
“I cannot remember my name… I don’t even know who I am.. Or where I am,” Guy looked down. “Do you know what happened to me?”
Ellie stood on her knees and looked at Guy. She felt sorry for him.
“My brother and I found you in the river just outside our house. You were all wet and bruised…” Ellie said and put her hands on his arm. “Do you not remember anything?”
“No…” Guy tried to remember… But his mind was a blur. Nothing.
Ellie had an idea. “I know! I will give you a name! Hmm… Let me see…” she said and looked at him.
“Kendall…It means ‘Narrow River’. And we found you in our narrow river, so it is perfect!” Ellie said rather proudly of herself.
Guy let out a chuckle and looked at Ellie. “How old are you?”
“I am six years old.”
“Six? And how do you know these things?” Guy asked.
“I am very clever!” she said, smiling. Just then her father walked into the room.
“Come here Ellie. Let him rest,” her father said, looking at them both.
“Father, his name is Kendall! Because he does not remember his name or how he got here!” she said loudly and jumped down from the bed.
Ellie’s father knew who he was and where he was from. He even knew how he got here. The rumours that Robin Hood had killed Guy of Gisborne were in every village.
He smiled at Ellie and then looked at Guy. “Actually, I know where you are from… Kendall,” Ellie’s father William said.
Guy looked up at him with wide eyes. “Really? Where?”
“Nottingham. Does it ring a bell?”
Guy tried to think, very hard… But no, nothing, again.
“No… I do not remember.”
“Well, I do not blame you. You hit your head pretty hard, I believe. Give it time, your memory will come back soon, I assure,” William looked at Guy.
“I will take you back to Nottingham when you are feeling better.”
“Thank you,” Guy said and lay back down on the bed.
William and Ellie exited the room and left Guy alone with his thoughts.
Nottingham… Have I ever been there before? This is not helping very much.
Guy looked to the side. On the chair beside the door lay a bunch of clothes. In leather.
Did I wear that? Really, leather? Hmm… It sounds kind of good.
And after that, Guy drifted off to sleep.
Marian woke up in the middle of the night. She had a bad feeling in her body. She had not seen Guy since she had visited him in his bedchamber, and she knew that he had gone after Robin. And the Sheriff was not in a very good mood about it.
God, what if something bad has happened to him? What if Robin has captured him? I need to get out of here. And talk to Robin.
She dressed quickly and went to the door. She turned the handle and slowly looked out into the hallway. I don’t understand why the guards don’t lock the door…
She saw the two guards sleeping against the wall; snoring loudly as she ran through the hallway down the stairs and started to look after a horse as soon as she came outside the castle.
Sherwood Forest lay very quiet as Marian rode through it. She could only hear the wind whispering and the hooves from her horse. The camp was not very far away now… The horse came to a stop and Marian jumped down and started walking.
“Well, this is something new. I didn’t know we had started with night visits,” Robin said with a selfish smirk on his face.
Marian jumped as she heard his voice and quickly turned towards him. “You scared me!”
“Sorry” he said. “So, what do you want? Since you came here in the middle of the night I guess this is rather important?”
Marian looked at him with an irritated stare. Of course this is important!
“Gisborne is gone. And I presume you know something about it…” Marian said and looked at him.
“Did you come here to talk about Gisborne? Well, in that case I will go back to sleep,” Robin said and started to walk away.
Marian grabbed his arm tight and looked him straight into the eyes.
“This is not a joke, Robin. My father and I are in great danger. And if Gisborne is gone, the Sheriff will kill us!”
Robin looked down at her; something in her eyes told him that this wasn’t the whole truth.
“You are not here for you, or your father. You are here for him, aren’t you? You are worried about him,” The tone in Robin’s voice was very sharp and serious.
Marian turned her head.
“You know that is not true…” she said. She could hear herself that she was not speaking the truth.
Robin looked at her coldly.
“You’re lying! You have lied to me all this time,” he said. “I’ve been fighting for you all this time and this is how you repay me?”
“Oh, grow up Robin! You have never been fighting for me! You have been fighting for England!”
“And just because I have been fighting for our country you have now decided to be in love with Gisborne?”
“I am not in love with him!” Marian yelled.
“It sounds like it!” Robin yelled back.
“You know where he is! Just tell me and we can talk about this another time,” Marian said and tried to calm down.
“You’re never going to find him” Robin said, lowering his voice.
“Why? Because you have him captured in your camp? Stop this nonsense Robin! You are just jealous of him! Tell me where he is!”
“He’s dead!” it slipped from Robin’s lips in a roar.
Marian’s body stopped. Everything stopped.
Her mouth was half open and she stared at him. And after some time when she realised what he had said, her mind exploded.
She threw herself at him. Punching him over and over and over again in his chest, screaming and crying. Robin put his arms around her and tried to calm her down.
“Do not touch me!” She screamed and started to run away from him, away from everything. She ran and ran through the forest. When she tasted blood in her mouth and her tears had started to burn, she slowed down and collapsed against a tree with her burning tears streaming down her cheeks.
Additional note: So, this is the second chapter of my fanfic One Last Try. I will publish a new chapter every Monday for the next couple of months. I really hope you all will enjoy this story. I wrote this one many years ago, if you have comments about grammar, spelling or things like that – please, save it. I know. English is not my native tongue, I don’t need to have it thrown in my face. LOL! Besides, I wrote this when I was very young. And even though I’ve been editing the story I can still miss things. I’ve tried NOT to edit too much, because I want to save the story. I mean I can start changing LOTS of things in this story but it wouldn’t be the same. But yes, read, enjoy, leave comments, whatever you want!