Royal Ruse Revealed (pt.6)

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Nottingham Castle. The Great Hall.
King’s Guardsman:
“Former sheriff, Edward of Knighton!”
(Allan steps forward and claps Edward on the shoulder.)
Allan: “Tell it how it is, Edward!”
Edward: “I will.”
(Edward glances at the King and steps forwards. Little John glances anxiously at Allan.)  

Locksley. Church. Interior.
Gisborne’s Man:
(Running in to Gisborne:) “We can catch her for you, sir.” (Gisborne bends down and picks up the ring from the floor. Isabella is glancing at him, torn between happiness for Marian and feeling sorry for her brother.)
Gisborne: (Sinisterly, a bit maliciously:) “No. Let her go.”

Nottingham Castle. The Great Hall.
(Edward kneels and kisses the King’s ring, then steps towards the doors by the fireplace. Little John sighs with a look of satisfaction. The doors creak open.)
King’s Guardsman: “Lord Knighton, go left, à gauche, to give evidence for the Sheriff. Go right, à droit, to give evidence against the Sheriff.”
(The doors close behind him.)

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Nottingham Town. Exterior. Main gate.
(Robin, Marian and Much stop in front of the gate. Two sentries stand guard.)
Robin: “We can’t be seen together.”
Much: “We’d never get in anyway.”
Marian: “I’ll try the east gate.”
(Marian slides off the back of the horse.)
Robin: “We’ll try the west. (Robin and Much gallop off to the left. Marian starts running to the right.) Marian!”
Marian: (Turns around.) “Robin!”
(Robin gallops back and stops in front of the south gate. Marian runs back to him. Robin leans down from the horse and gives Marian a long kiss. He straightens up, smiling, then turns his horse and rides off again. Marian lovingly and coyly watches him go, then runs off again herself.)  

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Nottingham Castle. Interior corridor.
(Edward reaches the end of the corridor. He pauses, looks to his right, then goes in.)
A small room.
(The Sheriff loudly lays the quill down on the table.)
Sheriff: (Gruff voice:) “Do you wish to give evidence against the Sheriff?”
(There is a moment of silence, then two arrows in quick succession pierce the table in front of him. The Sheriff pops his head up in total surprise.)
Robin: (Laughs. Mockingly:) “A clue: No!”
(Robin turns and leaves the room. The Sheriff makes to follow, but his sleeves are pinned to the table by the arrows. He frustratingly grabs at them, but can’t work them loose.)
Sheriff: “Help! Help!”
Interior corridor.
(Robin, Much and Edward run away, back to the Great Hall.)
The Great Hall.
(The doors by the fireplace open and Much runs in.)
Much: “It’s a trap! (Jumps up on the table in front of the King’s throne.) It’s a trap! (Points at the King.) This is not the King!”
(The King stands, glaring at Much.)
Man: “Arrest that imposter!” (Little John frowns in confusion at Much.)
Allan: “I knew this smelt funny.” (Djaq glowers at Allan.)
King: (Pointing at Much:) “Get him!”
Much: (to the gang:) “Run!”
(Allan, Little John, Will, Djaq and Much scramble away as Robin enters the hall with the rope over his shoulder and bow in hand.)

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(Robin runs up the stairs after them, but the Sheriff calls out.)
Sheriff: “Robin! (Robin stops, frustrated, on the landing halfway up the stairs.) Not so fast, my friend! (Robin impatiently looks back at the Sheriff, who has Much bent over with a dagger to his throat.) Sorry to burst your bubble, Hood! But… (The Sheriff pulls Much up to standing by his collar, keeping the dagger under his chin.)… I’m sure you know how this goes, hm? Hands up. (The Sheriff chuckles as Robin calmly grabs the end of the rope and glances up to see where Little John is.) Spoilt my game, Hood. Tut-tut.”
Robin: “John! Catch!”
(Robin throws the coil of rope up, holding an end for himself, and Allan catches the rope next to John at the top of the stairs. Two guards enter through the upper doors and turn to Robin as Little John presses his back against the wall. As Robin grabs an arrow from his quiver and fits the knot over its tip, Little John throws his cloak over the two men and Allan loops the rope over them. Robin aims at the celling and shoots, and two loud ricochets are heard as the Sheriff drops his guard on Much as the two of them follow the arrow’s path around the room. Marian rushes in to her father’s side, then Much looks down as the rope drops in front of him. The Sheriff sees Much looking down, then looks down himself and sees the arrow embedded perfectly between his black-nailed toes in the sole of his sandal. He does a double-take and looks anxiously back up at Much. Much smiles, pulls his arm away and runs. Little John and Will push the captured guards through the railing. The falling men are a counterweight and pull the Sheriff up by his foot. Robin points his drawn bow at the Sheriff, who is hanging upside down by his foot and roaring in indignation.)
Robin: “Everybody still, if you please! I think we can safely say… an audience with the King… has been suspended!”
(Edward and Marian are smiling and the gang are laughing. The Sheriff is still roaring with anger.)
Robin: “Come on, lads! Let’s go home.”
(Robin winks to Marian, who smiles more brightly this time.)
Sheriff: “Come back! Get me down from here, you blithering oafs!”
Courtyard.
(Robin and the gang walk down the outside steps. Robin looks back at them all proudly. They take a few more steps, then they all throw a fist in the air and cheer.)

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Ejections & Objections (pt.5)

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Nottingham Castle. The Great Hall.
(The King steps onto the long table, set up like a catwalk in the centre of the room. The nobles applaud and watch intently.)
King Richard: (Walking along on the table:) “My loyal subjects, we have survived the Holy Land and we are grateful for your warm welcome. (The Sheriff’s eyes dance, watching for the reaction from the nobles.) However, there are those amongst us who are disloyal. (The nobles gasp. Edward and Merton exchange glances.) Who would plot against authority, (The Sheriff eyes Edward and Merton.) who do not understand law and order. (Edward subtly glances back at Little John.) We must quash them now. (Pauses. The Sheriff looks around to see the others’ reactions.) Arrest Sheriff Vaisey!”
(Points at the Sheriff.)
Sheriff: (Feigning surprise well:) “Me?”
(The nobles murmur in happy surprise. Edward and Merton can’t believe it.)
King Richard: “Take him to the dungeons.”
Sheriff: “Me? Me? (Two soldiers each grab an arm of the Sheriff. Edward and Merton smile in delight.) Blithering oaf! Me? Arrest them! Arrest all of them! You idiotic buffoon!” (Little John and Allan laugh triumphantly.)  

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Locksley. Church. Interior.
(Marian walks solemnly towards the open doors of the church as the villagers applaud and toss yellow petals at her. Gisborne is already kneeling at the altar.)
Outside Locksley.
(On the hillside, Robin stands, slings a bundle of his few possessions over his shoulder, picks up his bow and quiver, gives a last glance at the church and walks towards his horse.)

Nottingham Castle. The Great Hall.
(King Richard sits back in the Sheriff’s tall chair.)
King Richard: “Good subjects. We must judge the Sheriff according to law. In such a case… we shall hear French evidence.”
Allan: (Puzzled:) “French evidence? What?”
King’s Guardsman: “Walter, Lord of Merton.”
(Merton straightens, looks at Edward, nods, and goes to the King. He kneels and kisses the King’s ring.)  

Locksley. Church. Interior.
(Canon Bond is officiating in Latin. Marian and Gisborne are kneeling at his feet.)

Nottingham Castle. Interior corridor.
(Merton strides down the corridor.)
King’s Guardsman: (Overdub of his instructions to Merton:) “Walter, Lord of Merton, go left, à gauche, to give evidence for the Sheriff. Go right, à droit, to give evidence against the Sheriff.”
(Merton slows as he reaches the end, looks to his right, and enters.)

A small room.
(The Sheriff, disguised and hidden in a brown cloak, sits at a small table.)
Sheriff: (In a gruff voice:) “Do you wish to give evidence against the Sheriff?”
Merton: (Boldly:) “I do.”
Sheriff: (Gruff voice:) “Good. (Looks up at Merton. Normal voice:) God save the King.” (The Sheriff pulls out a dagger as Merton realises in horror that he’s been tricked. The Sheriff stabs Merton.)  

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Locksley. Church. Interior.
(Much runs to the door and starts ringing the bell wildly.)
Much: “Stop the wedding! Stop the wedding!”
(Everybody in the church turns back to look at him.)
Outside Locksley.
(Robin, walking miserably along the road out of Locksley and leading his horse, hears the bell and Much’s voice. He stops and looks back, puzzled by Much’s outcry.)
Much: (Distantly:) “Stop the wedding! It’s not the King!”
Locksley. Church. Interior.
(Gisborne looks up, staring straight ahead.)
Much: “The King is an imposter! The King is not in Nottingham!”
(Gisborne’s men grab Much and stop him from ringing the bell.)
Gisborne’s Man: “Oi Stop!”
Canon Bond: “Whether the King is in Nottingham or not, that has no bearing on a wedding.”
Marian: (to Gisborne:) “Did you know this?”
Gisborne: “The priest is right. This makes no difference. Our happiness—”
Marian: (Interrupting:) “You lied to me! What else have you lied about?”
(Gisborne says nothing, but stares straight ahead again.)
Much: (Still yelling:) “He went to the Holy Land! (Pointing at Gisborne:) He tried to kill the King!” (Marian ponders Much’s words.)
Gisborne: (Looking ahead:) “I have done wrong, but you will wash away my sins.”

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Marian: “If it is not the King…”
Gisborne: “It is a ruse by the Sheriff to flush out his enemies.”
Marian: “What will happen to them? (Gisborne gives her a sinister look.) My father! I must go to Nottingham!”
(She hurriedly tries to stand up, but Gisborne grabs her by the arm.)
Gisborne: “Your father will be safe; I have made provision. He alone will be spared. You see? My influence, it benefits you. As my father-in-law he is protected. (Emphasises:) As my father-in-law!”
Marian: You are cruel!“
Much: "This is wrong!”
Canon Bond: “You must have legal grounds to object or remain silent.”
Much: “I have moral grounds!”
Gisborne: (to his men:) “Get him out of here!”
(Gisborne’s men grab Much and drag him away, but he continues to shout.)
Much: “This man is a traitor! And a liar! Is that legal? And… (points at Marian…) her heart belongs to another!”
(Gisborne’s men stop. Marian is distressed at Much’s revelation. She is trying to think what to do. She is torn between an opportunity to stop the wedding and a chance to save her father by marrying Gisborne.)
Much: (A bit quieter, his voice breaking:) “Let her tell you that. (Marian is still wrestling with her decision.) Marian, my lady. Tell them.”
Gisborne: “Yes, Marian. (Looks out at the audience.) Tell them. (Softly:) Remember your father.” (Marian realises she must go through with the wedding if she is to save her father.)
Marian: (Unemotionally, a bit haltingly:) “It is not true. (Marian looks at Much, who stares back incredulously.) I am sorry. I know you mean well. But my heart belongs here.”
Gisborne: (to priest:) “Get on with it!”
Much: “What?! (Marian is cringing inside as Gisborne’s men continue to drag Much away.) I don’t understand! This is surely some mistake!”
Canon Bond: “You have a ring?”
Much: “He needs you! Marian!!!” (Marian looks agonizingly past Gisborne’s shoulder, listening to Much’s last words. Gisborne lifts her left hand up and puts an elaborate ring on her finger.)

Gisborne: “Wise decision. In time you will thank me.”
(Much yells as he is pushed into the pond with a loud splash. Marian blinks and calmly looks down at her hand. She slowly pulls the ring off and slips it onto her right ring finger as the spectators start to murmur.)
Canon Bond: “No, the left hand.”
Marian: “No.”
Canon Bond: “The ring must go on the left hand.”
Marian: “No. (Rips the front of her veil from her face.) The right is better.” (Marian punches Gisborne just below the eye with her ringed hand. The canon looks on in disbelief.)
Exterior.
(Marian runs out of the church, wildly looking around for Robin, who she knows must be there. She spies him and smiles broadly as he gallops into the village at full speed.)
Robin: “Do you take this man, and this horse, as your route out of here?”
Marian: “I do!”
(Marian runs, smiling broadly as she weaves her way through the people and tables to meet Robin on the main path. Robin stops by her, also smiling, as Much crawls out of the pond.)
Much: “Master! The King! It’s not the King! He’s an imposter!”
(Robin’s face immediately turns serious as the peasants murmur.)
Robin: “A trap! I knew it! Who’s there?”
Much: “Everyone! The gang!”
Marian: “Robin, my father. He leads the rebellion.”
(Robin reaches an arm down to help Marian up behind him, then turns the horse to run to Nottingham. Marian takes the veil off her head and tosses it into the air, letting it fall to the ground behind them. Much, having found another saddled horse, takes off after them.)

Plotting & Prepping (pt.4)

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Merton Hall. Interior. Night.
Merton:
“Arms. What about weapons?”
Edward: “We will make sure all our men are armed under their cloaks. I will alert the King’s private guard as best I can.”
Merton: “I am anxious. What if the Sheriff is planning to—”
Edward: (Interrupting:) “Remember, the Sheriff will try to kill the King tomorrow. We will have the King’s private guard on our side. (Merton looks around at the others as Edward passes behind him.) And not just that. We will have right on our side. Justice. (Merton nods.) My lords, we’ve been biding our time for too long.”
(A knock sounds on the door. Merton goes over, draws his sword and points it at the door. The door opens to reveal Much, Will, Little John and Allan.)
Much: “We are Robin Hood’s men, here to protect the King.”
Edward: “Let them in. They are Robin’s men. We can trust them. Much served the King in Antioch. (Steps aside.) Welcome, Much. Robin is not with you?”
Much: “Robin is, er… by himself.”
Little John: “There is no Robin.” (Edward nods, understanding.)
Locksley. The next morning.
(Robin has spent the night on the hillside with his back against a tree. Birds are chirping, greeting the morning sun. Robin sits looking at the village, miserable and despondent. Meanwhile, the villagers are gladly preparing for the wedding. Gisborne comes down the steps of the church, walking along the pond and watching the hubbub. Isabella approaches him.)

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Isabella:
“Are you ready my brother?”
Gisborne: (Still watching the people.) “Look at them Isabella, all happy, running around, excited.”
Isabella: “They’re excited for you, for the day their Lord gets what he’s always wanted has finally arrived.”
Gisborne: “They all fear me-”
Isabella: (Interrupting:) “Respect. It is respect Guy. Locksley continues to thrive because of you. That’s something everyone can be joyous about.”
Gisborne: (Thinks a moment:) “Do you- (pauses) Do you think after-”
Isabella: (Puts her hand on Gisborne’s, holding it as she speaks:) “Once you and Marian are married your harsher ways will be tempered by her softness.”
Gisborne: “How can you be sure?”
Isabella: “Because I understand you, brother. I know that aside from power, all you’ve ever wanted in your life is to be truly loved.”
Gisborne: “That is the thing, isn’t it? To be understood. (Looks at his reflection in the pond. Sighs.) I have committed crimes.”
Isabella: “Really?”
Gisborne: (Looks at her.) “Heinous crimes. (Isabella stares incredulously at him.) But by taking Marian in holy wedlock… I will wash away those crimes.”
Isabella: “Guy…did you-” 
Gisborne: (Continuing, interrupting:) “I’m grateful that you are here with me. (Surprised by Gisborne’s moment of honesty, Isabella lets the question die on her lips and squeezes her brother’s hand in support.) Her pure heart…will cleanse mine.”

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Knighton Hall. Exterior.
(Marian unhappily steps out of the house in her wedding attire. She walks to Edward, standing by Gisborne’s coach.)
Marian: “Be careful.”
Edward: “I will.”
(Marian steps into the coach.)

Locksley.
(Marian’s coach arrives. Isabella smiles as Gisborne walks over to meet it. A page opens the coach door and bows. Marian gets out and looks around as Robin slouches on his tree, watching. Marian tries to smile at joyful peasants around her.)
Gisborne: “I hope the decorations… the church… I hope they please you.”
Marian: (Flatly:) “They do.”
Gisborne: “I hope I please you.”
Marian: “You should not be here.”
Gisborne: (Broodingly agitated:) “Who should be here?”

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Marian:
“You should be inside the church, waiting for me.”
(Steps past Gisborne towards the church.)
Gisborne: (Turns around to walk with her.) “Forgive me. I was unaware.”
Marian: “Have you never been to a wedding before?”
Gisborne: “Er, no.”
Marian: “Wait inside for me.”
(Marian stops. Gisborne takes several steps towards the church, looks at Isabella, who nods encouragingly, then he turns back.)
Gisborne: “Marian, I have dreamed of this day.”
Marian: (Quietly:) “Go.”
Gisborne: (Realising her father is not with her:) “Sir Edward?”
Marian: “He was needed on business. He sends his apologies. (Gisborne scoffs and gives her a sinister look.) What?”
Gisborne: “Nothing.”
(Gisborne turns to enter the church, Isabella walking beside him.)
Isabella: “I’m sure he’d be here if he could Guy. Don’t let it spoil your day.”
(Gisborne says nothing as he enters the church and the bell starts ringing. Marian steps slowly towards the church as Robin watches, still not having moved from the tree.)   

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Nottingham Castle. The main gate.
(The nobles enter, Edward on horseback. The gang follow, dressed as monks.)
Will: “This is strange. The gang without Robin.”
Much: (Curtly:) “It’s fine. He’s made his decision. It’s fine.” (Stops.)
Allan: “What are you doing?”
Much: (Shakes his head and pulls off his hood.) “There’s something I have to do. I must find Robin.” (Runs back through the town.)
Little John: “Come on. It’s up to us.”
(Little John, Djaq, Will and Allan continue into the castle.)
The approach to Nottingham.
(Much runs away from town, runs and runs. He runs up a hill and stops, out of breath. He looks up to see the King’s company approaching.)
Much: (to himself:) “His Majesty. (Smiles and throws his arms in the air.) Haaaa! Whoa! (Running up to the guards, waving his arms.) Your Majesty, welcome home! (to the first guard:) Wait! (The lead soldier pushes Much to the ground.) I’m Much! I fought in the King’s guard. I’m— (sees the "King.”) Your Ma— (Much realises the man riding past with a crown on his helmet is not King Richard. Much stares open-mouthed, watching the party go by, then realises it must be a trick set up by the Sheriff. He quickly gets to his feet, still staring towards Nottingham.) Edward. (Looks the other direction towards Locksley.) Marian.“ (Turns back towards Nottingham.) 
Nottingham Town.
(The King’s party rides through the street to cheers by the townsfolk.)
Nottingham Castle. Courtyard.
(The Sheriff has a smug look, standing in front of the nobles gathered on the steps. The King raises a hand to the cheering people. Merton and Edward are smiling. The King enters the courtyard, stops and removes his face mail.)
Sheriff: “Your Majesty. (He and all the nobles bow, as do the “monks” in the back.) Welcome to Nottinghamshire, the King’s own county.”
King Richard: “We are glad to be back on English soil.”
Sheriff: “I’m sure we are.”
(Smiles, revealing a red jewel in his new fake tooth.)  

To Confront & Concede (pt.3)

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Knighton Hall. Interior. Main room.
(Marian gingerly makes her way downstairs, using Isabella to lean on to steady herself and holding her side with her other hand. Edward hears the footsteps on the stairs and turns from the table where he was preparing a tray of food.)
Edward: “Marian? Isabella I told you she need her rest!”
Marian: “I asked her to help me downstairs, I was going stir crazy in bed all day.”
Isabella: “Perhaps your father is right Marian, you might tear Djaq’s sewing.”
Marian: “Shh, don’t fuss you two. (Changing the subject:) What is happening with Merton and the other nobles?”
(Edward and Isabella help her down the last steps and guide her towards a chair in the main room.)
Edward: “They are ready, making preparations.”
Marian: “Will you get word to the King?”
Edward: “If we can. I not, we will protect him as he arrives in Nottingham.”

(Marian sits down, Isabella passes behind Marian’s chair to sit in one opposite her and Edward returns to the tray on the table.)
Marian: “It is so dangerous. Any move against the Sheriff, if you were to be caught…”


Edward:
“I have waited too long, Marian.”
Marian: “And Robin?”

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Edward:
(Stops, alarmed.) “What of him?”
Marian: “Well, he used to be in charge of the King’s private guard. He will assist you.”
Edward: “I think not.”
Marian: “Why?”
Edward: “He wants to stop your wedding.”
Marian: (A pause. Looking sideways to Isabella then down at her hands, Quietly:) “He cannot.”
Edward: “I have told him.” (Edward brings the tray over and sets it by Marian.)
Marian: “Do you believe Gisborne went to the Holy Land? Tried to kill the King? Attacked Robin?”
Edward: (Shakes his head.) “I do not know what to believe any more.”
Marian: (Looking to Isabella:) “Is your brother capable of such an act?”
Isabella: (Sighs:) “My brother is power hungry, we all know this. (Takes Marian’s hand in her own, Earnestly:) But to travel to the Holy Land to kill King Richard? I doubt even Guy would be that fiendish.”
Marian: (Thinks a moment.) “Will you take me to him?”
Edward: (Interjecting:) “Robin?”
Marian: (Looking up at her father:) “No, Gisborne. (Turning back to Isabella:) I need to ask him.”

(Isabella nods mutely as Edward helps Marian out of the chair. Her expression unreadable as Marian gets to her feet.)

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Locksley Manor. Courtyard.
(Gisborne is giving instructions to his men.)
Gisborne: “Get out and scour the country for the Nightwatchman! (Marian gets out of the coach and says something to the page holding open the door for her. Isabella follows as Edward remains in the carriage.) I want him found by sunset! (Two servants carry the splintered door outside. Gisborne follows them out with Robin’s arrow in one hand and the axe in the other. He stops when he sees Marian walking slowly into the tunnel. With surprise:) Marian.”
Marian: “I am quite well.”
Gisborne: (Realises the axe is in his hand.) “Er, a robbery. A small thing. (Hangs the axe on a beam and lays the arrow on a table under it.) But I-I’ve taken extra precautions. You’re entirely safe.”
Marian: (Stepping inside the main room:) “I hope you have not lost anything important.”
Gisborne: (Sinisterly:) “I’ll get it back.” (Nods to Isabella who walks into the house, not stopping as she heads up the stairs to her room.)
Main room.
(Marian turns around as Gisborne slowly enters, wondering why she’s here.)
Marian: “Sir Guy, I must ask you a difficult question.”
Gisborne: “I’m intrigued.”
Marian: “Did you try and kill the King in the Holy Land?”


Gisborne:
(Smiles slightly, then his face falls a bit.) “Pardon?”
Marian: “Is it true? That last year you were not in quarantine with a fever…(Gisborne turns away and takes a few steps….) but that you travelled to the Holy Land, you and others dressed as Saracens, and tried to kill the King?”

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Gisborne: “Robin Hood.”
Marian: “What of him?”
Gisborne: (Turns to Marian.) “Been talking to him?”
Marian: “This is a rumour which has been circulating and I need an answer. I could not marry you if it were true.”
Gisborne: (Sighs.) “Rumours, Marian. (Circles her.) You need to be more careful… (intensely in her ear: …) who you listen to. (Marian is piqued, but says nothing.) The day the King returns is a day of joy for me. It is the day that I marry you.”
Marian: “I am not sure.”
Gisborne: “Well, you must be sure.”
Marian: “But—”
Gisborne: (Interrupting:) “Have you not seen what to do to me? My passion for you? (Gisborne leans in and kisses Marian. After a brief moment, she pulls back, disconcerted.) I have never felt like this before.”
Marian: “I must go.” (Walks determinedly towards the door.)
Gisborne: “Stay.” (Marian keeps walking.)
Marian: “I must go.” (Gisborne catches her arm and stops her.)
Gisborne: “Not until you tell me you believe me.”
Marian: (Flatly:) “I believe you.”
(Smiles slightly and leaves. Gisborne looks up, gives a small sigh, then sits back in a chair and sighs deeply, reigning in his passion.)

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Knighton Hall. Main room.
(Marian drops her Nightwatchman’s mask into the fireplace, then drops her cloak on top of it. Robin appears in the rear open doorway, his horse tethered to a post outside.)
Robin: (Softly:) “How are you feeling?”
(Marian looks up, surprised. Robin is leaning on the jamb with doleful eyes.)
Marian: “I’ve been to see Guy. I’ve challenged him.”
Robin: (Sarcastically, jealously:) “And let me guess. (Stepping towards Marian:) You asked him if he was a traitor, he said he wasn’t, and you believed him.”
Marian: “Yes.” (Robin nods once, leans on the post at the foot of the stairs, glances out the open front door, then stares at her.) Robin, I think you’ve been wrong about him.” 
Robin: (Quietly:) “No! Trust me. I’ve been right about him.”
Marian: “Maybe the difference between you and he is not so huge. (Robin’s eyes drift away.) And isn’t that your thesis? Isn’t that the Robin Hood world view?”
Robin: “What thesis?”
Marian: “That one man is much like another. That the poor are no different from the wealthy and just as deserving. Why can’t you apply your charitable principles to somebody who’s been deprived in a different way? Deprived of love.”
Robin: (Raises eyebrows scornfully.) “Deprived of love.”
(Robin crosses to fireplace. Marian clenches her fists in frustration as Robin notices the mask burning in the fire.)

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Robin: “The Nightwatchman.”
Marian: (Slowly turns to face Robin.) “This is goodbye, Robin. (Robin sighs and turns around.) It’s time for us to both grow up and accept our lot in life.”
Robin: “Are you marrying him?”
Marian: (Unemotionally:) “I am marrying him.”
Robin: (Nods once in gracious defeat.) “Very well.”
Marian: (Surprised:) “Pardon?”
Robin: (Walking past Marian:) “You said grow up, and I’m growing up.”
(Robin passes her for the back door, leaving her bewildered and confused.)
Marian: “Robin, where are you going?”
(Robin doesn’t answer and goes out the door towards his horse. Marian slams her hand into a post, frustrated that Robin has given up fighting for her.)

Close House Calls (pt.2)

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Nottingham Castle. Sheriff’s quarters.
(The doors open and the Sheriff and Gisborne enter.)
Gisborne: “It would have been nice to have dealt with Hood before the King returns. (The Sheriff laughs, pulling off his gloves.) What?”
Sheriff: “The King is not coming.” (Cups water from a bowl in his hands and sucks in the water.)
Gisborne: “What do you mean the King is not coming?”
Sheriff: (Spits the water back into the bowl.) “He is in the Holy Land. (Spits again.) I have arranged an imposter. Think about it. Is the real King, who spent God-knows-how-long fighting in the Holy Land, going to stop off in Nottingham on his way home for a chat? A clue: no!” (Sits.)
Gisborne: “Why?”
Sheriff: “How many of our friends are against us? Hm? Our pathetic lords: Merton, Woodvale, Edward, hm? How many of them are scheming? Smiling at us? Lying? Biding their time? Nodding their heads? All the while preparing for the return of their King, the precious Richard the Lionheart. Preparing, hm? To turna gainst us the minute he walks through that door.”
Gisborne: “I don’t know.”
Sheriff: “None of them have ever seen the King. So, this way we find out, hm? The plots bubble to the surface. The rats come scurrying out of the woodwork.”
Gisborne: “Why didn’t you tell me?”
Sheriff: (Sarcastically apologetic:) “Oh, sorry. Nothing personal, hm? Anyway, you should thank me. You get to marry the girl.”
Gisborne: “Yeah, but based on a lie. The King is not really coming.”
Sheriff: “Oh, isn’t that despicable, hm? I don’t know how could you possibly live with yourself.”
Gisborne: (Looks down. Quietly:) “What if Edward is one of them?”
Sheriff: (Slams his hand on the table. Roars:) “I will hang him!”
Sherwood Forest. Heading towards Knighton.
(The gang have fashioned a stretcher suspended from two tent poles and are carrying Marian home. Djaq leads the way. Robin and Much carry the forward end of the poles; Little John holds up both rear ends. Marian is pale and rests fitfully.)
Little John: “Swap!”
(Allan and Will take the forward ends, replacing Robin and Much. Robin stops and leans on a tree a moment, then walks along beside a few steps, watching Marian pass. He stops and puts his hands on his knees. Much slaps his shoulder as he runs past him.)
Much: “Come on!”

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Knighton. Interior. Marian’s bedchamber.
(Little John carries Marian into her room. Djaq and Robin follow. Little John gently places Marian on her bed as Edward, Allan and Much enter and crowd round the bed. Djaq pulls the blankets over her as Edward leans over anxiously.)
Edward: “Robin, this is my fault.”
(Will watches the garden from the window over the stairs. Robin stands at the foot, staring worriedly. Allan sits on Marian’s windowsill.) 
Robin: “No. It was the Sheriff and Gisborne’s.” (Djaq checks Marian’s pupils.)
Edward: (Stepping to Robin:) “When the King returns, the Sheriff will make his move. You know that. He will try to kill the King. Help me stop him. (Robin turns his head away.) My daughter’s wedding takes place in Locksley on Saturday. (Much is listening. Little John shrugs out of his left coat sleeve with a groan, revealing a torn and bloody shirt sleeve where the arrow grazed him.) At the same time, the Sheriff will meet the King in Nottingham. Maybe he’s thinking I and others will attend the wedding and leave him free to assassinate the King. (Robin turns an exasperated head, not wanting to hear. Djaq looks at Little John’s arm as Little John listens.) But we must forget the wedding. We must be in Nottingham.”
Robin: “We? (Shakes his head slightly.) I don’t think so.”
Edward: “You, me and a number of loyal nobles. (Robin stares desperately at Marian. Djaq stands up. Marian tosses her head on the pillow.) Now is the time to act, to stand up and defend our king. Join us.”
Robin: (Fiercely:) “What about Marian? She cannot be left to meet Gisborne at the altar.” (Will leaves the window and steps in the doorway.)
Will: (Whispers:) “Gisborne!”
(Edward and the gang look at Will in alarm. Robin hangs his head.)
Edward: “I’ll get rid of him.” (Goes downstairs.)

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(Little John stands and puts his arm back in his coat sleeve. Allan looks out Marian’s window to see Gisborne dismounting.)
Main room.
(Edward comes quickly downstairs. Just as he reaches the bottom, Gisborne raps loudly on the door.)
Marian’s bedchamber.
(Marian stirs. Much looks wildly around for a place to hide. Robin is still standing at the foot of the bed, staring at his beloved as Edward opens the door.)
Edward: (From downstairs:) “Sir Guy?
Gisborne: “I’ve come to see Marian. There’s something I need to

speak to her about.”
Edward: “She’s indisposed.”
Main room.
(Gisborne is standing at the door.)
Gisborne: “Indisposed?”
Edward: “Sleeping.”
Gisborne: (Leans on the jambs, suspecting Edward is hiding something:) “At this hour?”
Edward: “She is… unwell.”
Gisborne: “She’s not here.”
Edward: “She is here.”
Gisborne: (Looks down, sighs.) “I knew it. I knew she would not keep her promise. (Looking pointedly at Edward:) She cannot run from me.”
Edward: (Protesting:) “Sir Guy, I assure you that she would—”
Gisborne: (Interrupting:) “Do not “Sir Guy” me. (Steps inside.) Where is she?”
Edward: “She’s been injured. I do not know how. Perhaps a fall in the woods.”
Gisborne: (Pushes Edward aside.) “Don’t lie to me!” (Goes upstairs.)
Edward: “I am not lying!” (Closes the front door and follows Gisborne upstairs.)
Marian’s bedchamber.
(Robin stands still with an intense look on his face as footsteps come up the stairs. Much panics, looking for a place to hide and ducks behind the door as it opens. Gisborne strides in and Edward stops short to avoid running into him.)
Gisborne: (Upon seeing Marian in the bed:) ”Ah.”
Edward: “I told you.”
(Gisborne steps to Marian’s bedside as Edward looks around for the others and spies Robin pressed between beams against the ceiling over Marian’s bed. Gisborne leans over Marian.)
Gisborne: “She looks pale. Marian? (Marian opens her eyes and sees Gisborne’s face above hers and beyond it, through the green gauze draped over her bed, Robin against the ceiling.) Sh-sh. It’s all right. It’s only me. (Marian’s eyes flicker to Robin, who is staring a warning at her, then close.) She is unwell. I will send for a physician.”
Edward: “No need. (Smiles.) I’m sure rest and recuperation..(Edward pushes Little John’s foot further under the bed with his. Reaches out to Gisborne’s shoulder.) Perhaps the excitement of the wedding.” (Gisborne stands and lets Edward guide him to the door as Marian opens her eyes.)
Gisborne: “Is that true? The wedding excites her?”
(Marian stares up at Robin.)
Edward: “You wanted to tell her something?”
Gisborne: “Yes. (Robin and Marian both look at Gisborne.) Tell her… I am also… (pauses, shakes his head.) Goodbye.” (Leaves abruptly.)
(Marian looks at Robin.)
Edward: “Goodbye, Sir Guy.”

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(Edward follows Gisborne out and closes the door behind them. Little John flips up a cloth hanging from the foot of the bed and pokes his head out. Much breathes a sigh of relief and slides his sword back into its sheath. Will jumps downfrom inside the chimney. Allan pulls himself up on the window bars from outside.)
Much: (Crossly:) “I will send for a physician.” (Will glances at Much, who walks towards the fireplace.) He just killed one. (Robin drops down from the ceiling. Pointing towards the door:) He is revolting.”
(Allan crawls head first through the window.)
Marian: (Weakly:) “He killed one?”
(Allan stands up and lets out his breath.)
Much: “Yes. Pitts. (Will stands up from the fireplace. A knock is heard in the room. Much looks behind him. Allan and Will open the trunk along the wall and pull up the green cloth draped over it to reveal Djaq, who gets out as Robin walks around the foot of the bed and sits at Marian’s side.) We thought he would denounce Gisborne, but he was a traitor. He was also revolting. I’m glad he is dead.” (Marian frowns.)
Allan: “Yeah, but she’s got to marry Gisborne now. Tomorrow.”
(Marian stares at Robin.)
Much: “True.” (Edward opens the door and enters.)
Robin: “Marian, I will find another way out of this.”
Edward: (Sternly, with deliberate care:) “Robin, I need to speak to you.”
(Marian weakly raises her head, wanting Robin to stay.)
Outside Marian’s bedchamber.
(Robin and Edward step onto the landing outside. Robin leans on the windowsill, looking outside.)
Edward: “Do you really have another way out for Marian?”
Robin: (Earnestly, desperately:) “I will think of something.”
Edward: “If you cannot stop it, then do not speak of it.”
Robin: “Once Marian is married, it can never be undone.”
Edward: “Then what is your plan?”
Robin: (Turns to the window, sighs and hangs his head, then looks at Edward. Quietly:) “Edward, I will think of something.”
Edward: “No! That is not good enough. (Robin turns angrily to the window.) You will raise Marian’s hopes. You will raise her hopes only to see them dashed. If you care about her, spare her that. If you cannot save her, I beg you, do the right thing. Let her go.”
Robin: (Chuckles. Turns to Edward with tears in his eyes:) “You know something? Looks through the door at Marian. I am sick of doing the right thing.” (Robin glances once more at Marian, then goes downstairs.)
Edward: (Calling after him:) “Robin? I need your help. (The front door closes below.) Robin!”

All Hell Breaks Loose

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Sherwood Forest. Cave. Exterior.
(The Sheriff and Gisborne approach. A few footsoldiers are carrying large basket-weave shields on their backs.)
Sheriff: (Calls out:) “You’re getting slack, my friend! (Little John and Much scramble unseen from the cave entrance to behind two large boulders on a rise.) Could it have been easier for me, hm? If you’d led me by the-
Interior.
(Robin is listening, leaning on Marian’s chest, staring at the wall, intense with rage.)
Sheriff: “-hand to your little hidey-hole?
Exterior.
Sheriff:
“A clue: no.”
(Little John and Much crouch behind the boulders.)
Much: (Muttering:) “Allan. Where are Allan and Will?”
(Much slams arrow points into the ground behind the boulder. Little John watches the Sheriff’s advance as Much nocks an arrow in his bow.)
Little John: (to Much:) “Now.”
(Little John stands on the boulder and Much rises up behind his, in view of the oncoming party. Much points his drawn bow at the Sheriff.)
Much: (Roars:) “Stand!”
Sheriff: (Unconcerned, feigned slight surprise:) “Oh.”
Much: “Stand or we shoot!”
(The Sheriff and Gisborne stop. The Sheriff looks around for more of Robin Hood’s men.)
Sheriff: “Er, there are two of you!”
Much: “Last warning!”
Sheriff: (Quietly to Gisborne, still looking at Much:) “How many do you think there could be of them?”
Gisborne: “A dozen or so at the most…(The Sheriff chuckles and looks around again)…. of the inner circle.”
Sheriff: (Face falls.) “And how many of the outer circle?”
Gisborne: “I don’t know.”
Sheriff: (Scowls. to Much:) “You seem to misunderstand me, my friend!”

Interior.
(Djaq pushes Pitts up against the wall, her sword at his throat.)
Sheriff: (From outside:) “You do not have a bargaining position!”
Djaq: “Robin…(Robin hasn’t moved, still entranced with rage.) what do I do with him? If he dies you have nothing against Gisborne.”
Exterior.
Sheriff:
“Wait! (Thinking out loud:) Why are they not running? Why are they not running? (Pointing at the cave:) Hood must be in there.”
Much: “John? Now what?”
(Little John glances at Much.)
Sheriff: (Tilts his head.) “Bored now. Kill them!” 
(Motions advance with his arm.)
Gisborne: “Positions!”
(The soldiers and a handful of archers line up in front of the Sheriff and Gisborne. Two set up the large shields.)    

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Much:
“John, I think we’re gonna die.”
(Little John bends down to the ground as the soldiers and archers take their positions.)
Little John: “A good day.”
(Rubs a streak of black earth under his eyes.)
Much: “What?”
Little John: (Gruffly, intensely:) “A good day to die.”
Much: “What?”
Little John: “It’s a saying.”
Gisborne: “Take aim!”
Much: “I hate sayings.”
(Much holds the arrow to his cheek and closes one eye. The Sheriff’s archers pull back their bowstrings. There is a momentary standoff, then an arrow flies from behind Much and hits a soldier squarely in the chest in front of the Sheriff. Much looks behind him.)
Sheriff: (Pointing:) “There’s Hood! Shoot!”
(Robin bursts out of the cave and falls to his knees, slamming a fistful of arrows point first into the ground, his bow in his other hand.)
Much: (Quietly chastising:) “Robin!”
(Robin draws back a nocked arrow with another one waiting tucked in between his fingers, ready to be nocked quickly. He shoots and immediately grabs the bowstring as the Sheriff ducks low behind the horse’s head. Robin fires off the other as the Sheriff’s archers shoot back, forcing Much to duck.)
Sheriff: (Sits back up. With a hand over his mouth:) “Ah! My tooth! (Robin shoots at Gisborne, who has to duck as the mounted soldiers regroup. Robin grabs his arrows from the ground as Little John glances at him. Robin rolls down the hill as more arrows fly past him. Crawling on the floor:) Where’s my tooth? (Robin continues to roll as Much faces the battle and shoots down an archer. Robin stops about even with Little John and Much, but several paces away below the boulders. He slams the arrow points into the ground and pulls three back out. The Sheriff is on his hands and knees under his horse, looking for the tooth just knocked out of his mouth by his quick duck into the horse’s head.) Gisborne, where’s my tooth? (Robin shoots an arrow. A soldier grunts and falls onto theg round right in front of the Sheriff with an arrow in his back.) What is this? (With emphasis on each word:) Hood does not kill!”
(Robin has four arrows ready: one nocked on the string and three more between each of his fingers. He aims and shoots them in rapid succession. An archer and a footsoldier go down as Djaq, with her sword, and Pitts emerge from the cave. Three more soldiers are shot, the arrows squarely piercing their chests. A mounted soldier falls in front of Gisborne.)    
Pitts: (Standing in the entrance waving a bandage:) “Do not shoot! (Much barely ducks an arrow flying past his shoulder. Pitts runs down the hill as Robin shoots another arrow.) Sir Guy, it’s me!”
(Pitts runs past Robin and stops in his line of fire.)
Robin: (Irritably:) “Move!”
Pitts: “Sir Guy?”
Gisborne: “Kill him!”
Pitts: “I have always served you well!”
Gisborne: “You’ve served your purpose. Kill him!”
(Pitts panics and turns to run away as an archer takes aim at him. He is shot in the back and falls face down. Robin is stunned for a brief second, watching his only witness fall, then regains his composure and draws.)
Sheriff: (Pointing at Gisborne:) “You’re learning.”
(Robin fires at Gisborne, who ducks. Little John’s upper arm is grazed by an arrow which gets stuck in his sleeve.)
Gisborne: “Second line forward!”

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(The foot and mounted soldiers advance. Robin throws down his bow and reaches for his scimitar. He stands up, draws his weapon, tossing the scabbard aside, and runs a few steps forwards, holding the hilt with both hands. Much and Little John hear the ring of the scimitar and glance back at

Robin.)
Much: (Draws his sword and looks at Little John.) “It is a good day!”
(Robin charges. Little John, Much and Djaq follow, all yelling a war cry.)
Little John: “Come on, then!”
(The Sheriff stands behind his horse, frightened and confused.)
Sheriff: “What is this? Is this suicide?”
(The Sheriff ducks behind his horse as the gang yell and charge. Robin swings his scimitar at a soldier’s sword with all his might, then spins round and holds his sword up over his head to block a second. Gisborne looks on in disbelief.)
Much: “We fight for Robin Hood and King Richard!”
(Much charges in at two soldiers, swinging his sword in an arc to parry both at once. Little John runs in and jabs the butt of his staff into one man before taking on another. Robin is hacking at the soldiers, showing no mercy as Djaq enters the fray behind him. Little John knocks out a soldier with his staff. Djaq stops in front of a charging soldier and lets him roll over her back before taking on the next one. Gisborne circles the mêlée on his horse, watching incredulously as Robin spins, slicing through a man in front and behind him simultaneously. Little John knocks out a soldier. Robin hacks at another’s back and makes a beeline for Gisborne, who pulls back his horse. They stare at one another, Robin with intense rage in his eyes. Suddenly an arrow flies, just missing Gisborne’s head, a shaft from Allan’s bow. Robin looks back to see Will running to join in, yelling, as Little John watches in surprise.)
Much: “Allan!”
(Robin hears the swing of a sword, ducks, grabs the soldier’s arm as he takes another swing, and slices his throat.)
Sheriff: “Do something, Gisborne!”
Gisborne: “Regroup!”
(Little John beats off more soldiers with his staff. Allan takes a shot at the Sheriff, who ducks. The arrow hits a mounted

soldier in the neck instead.)
Sheriff: (Panicked:) “Get me out of here!”
(Will charges, yelling, at a guard. He blocks overhead with both hands on his broadaxe and kicks the man back at the same time. Allan runs in to join the battle with his sword in hand.)
Allan: “I fight for Robin Hood and King Richard!”
(Djaq stabs a guard. All the gang are stabbing, slicing, et cetera, and showing no mercy and amazingly receiving no harm in return. The Sheriff is running around, wildly trying to find an escape.)
Sheriff: “Get me out of here!”
(Will swings his broadaxe into the stomach of a charging soldier and ducks another one swinging. Gisborne watches them all in fear as Allan swings his sword into the back of a soldier and Will kicks out at another. The Sheriff waves at Gisborne’s retreating men, trying in vain to get them to protect him.)
Gisborne: “Move back!”
(The gang keep attacking and all the soldiers run off. Gisborne follows on his horse as Allan hacks at a prone soldier’s stomach. Little John wildly pulls the arrow out of his sleeve as the Sheriff and Gisborne gallop off side by side.)
Sheriff: (Slapping Gisborne’s shoulder:) “Those blithering idiots cost me my tooth!”
(The gang spin around, prepared to take on more, but their opponents are riding or running off. Battle over, they catch their breath. Robin looks around with wide eyes. Much turns around with his sword out. Allan looks round. Little John glances at Allan. Will guiltily looks down. Much sinks to his knees and sits on his heels. Robin takes one last look around, then, leaning on his scimitar, slowly goes down to one knee, hanging his head.)
Little John: (Glancing between Allan and Will:) “Where were you two?”
(Will is ashamedly silent.)
Allan: “I can explain. It’s a woman, a mother, was giving birth to this newborn babe, right?”
Will: (Simply, guiltily:) “We were gonna take the haul. Gisborne’s money. We were gonna take it to Scarborough.”
Allan: “Yeah… what can I say?”
Will: “Sorry! (Sincerely:) Really.”
Allan: “Well, we’re here now. Saved your bacon, actually. What? We said sorry.”
Much: “Marian. Gisborne stabbed her last night. (Allan is surprised.) And she’s…”
Robin: (Looking up, quietly:) “She’s dead." 

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Interior.
(Marian lies as they left her on the rock slab. Little John leads the gang in with a torch. They stop a few paces from her.)

Djaq:
“We need to bury her.”
Robin: (Voice all but breaking. Quietly:) “We must take her to Knighton Hall, to her father. (Stands staring at Marian with tears in his eyes.) John, I want you to… (trying not to break down.) Djaq, prepare her body. (Takes a step towards Marian.) Will, I need you to make…(Robin takes in an audible breath as Little John passes behind him and puts his arm round his shoulders.) I need you to make a coffin.”
Little John: “Shhh-sh-sh-sh-sh-sh. In good time. First… (glances at Marian)… we say goodbye.” (Turns to face Marian.)   
Will: (Softly:) "She was a good woman. (A tear falls.) Kind and considerate.”
Much: “Good? Oh, she was…She was…”
Allan: “She was all right… Yeah.”
Little John: “Her… we liked.”
Robin: “Her we loved. Her I loved… I loved her and I never told her.”
Much: “Well, she knew. We all knew.”
(Allan shifts his feet, frowning at Marian, takes a step forwards, staring at her.)
Allan: “I’m not being funny, right? She’s breathing.”
(Robin rolls his eyes, thinking Allan has a bad joke going, as Little John glances at Marian, frowning. Allan, sensing their scepticism, earnestly holds an arm out to her and Little John takes the torch over. Will stares at her, hardly daring to hope. Robin and Much remain still as Djaq holds her sword under Marian’s nose, and sees her breath condense on the cold metal.)
Djaq: “On the blade. She is breathing.”
Allan: (Holding his arms out:) “Eh? Told ya!”

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Djaq: (Unbuttoning Marian’s coat:) “The physician’s draught. I have heard of this before. Hemlock. Too much and the body freezes… (opening Marian’s eyes, one at a time, to check her pupils: …) the breathing stops. But if one is young and strong, the body fights back. Comes back from the dead!”
Allan: “She died?”
Djaq: “And came back!”
Much: (Shaking his head with relief and joy:) “Oh, that is…”
(Djaq and Little John chuckle with relief. Will stares, tears still falling.)    
Robin: “Marian? Marian? (Rubbing her cheek.) Marian?”
(Marian weakly opens her eyes. Robin laughs in relief.)
Marian: “Where have I been?”
Robin: (Quietly:) “I don’t know… but I’m glad you’re back!”
(Robin gazes at her a moment. Marian stares weakly but wide eyed at Robin, who chuckles again.)

Crisis Point (pt.6)

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Cave. Interior. Continued.
(Djaq is still trying to mend Marian’s wound. She is poking around inside trying to see what she needs to do. Marian moans, just about unconscious.)
Djaq: “It’s too…”
Much: (Enters quietly.) “Master? “ (Robin has his attention on Djaq.)
Djaq: “I can’t reach it without causing further damage.”
Much: “Master…”
Djaq: “Robin, press here. Stop the bleeding.”
(Robin reaches in, squirms a bit and hisses. Marian lets out a soft moan and Djaq shakes her head in frustration.)
Djaq: “I cannot!”
Robin: “What?”
Djaq: “I am not trained. I don’t have the right instruments. I can’t do it.”
Robin: “Much, put your finger here.”
Much: “Me?”
Robin: “Yes, you! Come on! (Much darts forward.) I need to get the physician.”
Djaq: “There is no time.”
Much: (Puts his finger in.) “Ah, eugh.”
Robin: “Make me time.”
Djaq: “Be quick.”
Much: “Here?”
Djaq: “Yes!”
(Djaq starts poking around again. Marian has stopped moaning, now fully unconscious. Djaq is panicked, trying to find a way to do what must be done.)   

Sherwood Forest. The Great North Road.
(Allan and Will emerge from the trees.)
Allan: “Yeah, this is it. The Great North Road. (Will leading the horse, stops and looks.) So which way are we gonna go? Back to the cave or pastures new?”
Will: “What if they need our help, the others?”
Allan: “What for? They got away. (Will looks at him wide-eyed.) Where’d your old man go, and your brother, when they ran away?”
Will: “Scarborough. My aunt Annie.”
Allan: (Gets a flask off the horse and walks around to Will.) “Well… I wouldn’t mind meeting your auntie Annie. What do you reckon? (Drinks. Will looks at Allan.) You know what I was thinking? I was thinking Robin would want this for us. He would. He’d want the best for us.”
(Will grabs the flask and drinks as Allan steps around him, grabs the reins and starts walking. Will steps forward, looks back towards the forest, nods, raises the flask, takes another sip and catches up Allan.)  

Nottingham Town. Pitts’s house. Interior.
(Robin rides quickly up to Pitts’s house, leading another horse. He jumps off and runs to the window.)
Robin: “Pitts! Pitts!” (Goes to the door and bangs on it.)

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Pitts:
“Yes, yes, what is it?”
Robin: (Through the window in the door:) “I need your help. A friend of mine has been stabbed. She… (realises the truth he is about to speak)… She is close to death.”
Pitts: (Opening the door:) “Bring her here.”
Robin: (Steps inside and closes the door.) “I cannot. I will take you to her. I’ve brought you a horse.”
Pitts: “Well, where is she? I-I-I need to know in case anybody—”
Robin: (Interrupting:) “We must leave now. (Puts his hand on Pitts’s.) There is no time.”
Pitts: (Claps his other hand on Robin’s twice.) “All right. Let me get my things. (Goes upstairs.)
An upstairs room.
(Pitts grabs a large shoulder bag from under the table, sets it on top and starts putting things into it.)
Robin: (From downstairs:) “Hurry up!”
Pitts: (Slightly panicked:) “Don’t worry, my friend! Everything is under control! (Goes to the window and gets the attention of a guard below:) Psst. Psst.”
(The guard looks up at Pitts motioning to him. He taps his companion and they both move towards the house. Pitts resumes his packing, reaching for a large pile of rolled-up bandages and setting them all on top.)
Robin: (From downstairs:) “Hurry! Come on!”
(Pitts grabs his bag without closing the flap and goes to the

stairs.)
Downstairs.
(Pitts appears at the top of the stairs.)
Robin: “Hurry up!”
(Pitts smiles and tries to put the bag’s strap over his shoulder, but in his panic dumps the entire bag down the side of the stairs, its contents spilling everywhere.)
Pitts: (Hurrying down the stairs:) “I’m sorry, I’m sorry. (Robin helps him collect his things. Robin grabs at the rolls of bandages and looks questioningly at Pitts.) Bandages. (They finish putting things back in the bag as Pitts mutters.) All right, let’s see. Yes, yes.”
(Pitts grabs his cloak and they head out the door. The guards watch them leave, then quickly head towards the castle.) 

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Sherwood Forest. The cave. Interior.
(Much stands over Marian with his finger inside her wound. Nearby, Djaq squats over a bowl of water, washing her hands. Little John holds a torch over Marian.)
Much: “I’m not doing anything. I’m just pressing, right?”
Djaq: “Yes. There’s not much else we can do. The physician has the instruments.”
Much: “Should I be able to feel a heartbeat?”
Djaq: (Looks up.) “Yes.”
(Much sends a panicked look at Djaq. Djaq gets to her feet and hurries over. She lifts up Marian’s eyelids, thinks a moment, then pounds a fist on Marian’s chest. Much grabs her arm.)
Much: “What are you doing?! What are you doing?! You’ll hurt her!”
Djaq: “Trust me, Much. Where she is she cannot feel a thing!”
(Djaq pulls her arm away and pounds three more times.)
Sherwood Forest.
(In the forest, Robin and Pitts gallop towards the cave. Pitts flips a bandage behind him.)
The cave.
(Djaq pounds twice more.)
Djaq: “Anything?”
Much: (Shakes his head vigorously.) “Oh, come on. Come on, Marian.”
Sherwood Forest.
(Robin and Pitts gallop towards the cave.)
The cave.
(Djaq pounds on Marian’s chest)
Much: “Please.”
Sherwood Forest.
(Pitts throws another bandage. Robin reins in his horse.)
The cave.
(Djaq pounds on Marian’s chest and looks at Much.)
Much: “Yes! Smiles brightly. Yes! Yes!”
Djaq: (Laughs.) “Allah be praised!”
Much: (Raises his fists in the air.) “Allah be praised!”
Little John: (Arms wide.) “Allah be praised!”
Much: “How did you do that?”
Djaq: “Put your finger back in. Now! (Much puts his finger back in. Both of them are breathing heavily.) This will happen again. Where is the physician? I cannot wait.”
The cave. Exterior.
(Robin shoos the horses away.)
Robin: “Yah! Go on! (Pitts looks nervously behind him. Robin runs up to the cave.) Djaq! … Much! John!”
(Pitts follows Robin inside with the large bag over his shoulder.)
Interior.
(Robin enters and walks over to Marian.)
Robin: “How is she?”
Djaq: “Alive.”
(Robin glances at Much’s anxious face then solemnly bends over Marian as Pitts comes over.)

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Robin: (to Pitts:) “You have to save her.”
Pitts: (Nervously:) “Science is advanced, but we’re always in the hands of the Lord. (to Djaq:) Here, you give her this. (Pitts pulls a bottle out of his nearly empty bag as Robin takes off his cape. Pitts hands the bottle to Djaq.) It’s a draught for the surgery. Put a little on her tongue.”
(Pitts pulls the strap over his head, then looks nervously back at Little John behind him. Djaq puts a drop of liquid on Marian’s tongue.)
Djaq: “She has a dagger wound near the liver. A leaking blood vessel. I have sewn it up.”
Pitts: “You’ve been trained?”
Djaq: “A little.”
Pitts: “Good, good. Then you’ve probably saved her life.”
Much: “She has saved her life.” (Much nods at Djaq, who returns it.)
Djaq: “If you agree, I can close up the wound.”
Pitts: (Glances at the wound. Very agreeably:) “Very good. Close away.”
(Nervously looks around.)
Djaq: “Do you have clean needle? (Pitts looks at Djaq.) Thread? Cloth?”
Pitts: “Oh, yes.”
(Pitts opens his bag and Robin notices it is void of bandages. Pitts pulls out an instrument case and hands it to Djaq. Much wipes his forehead as Djaq opens the case. Robin glances at Much and Djaq with just his eyes, then stares at Pitts with a piercing glare. Pitts’s eyes flicker nervously at Robin.)
Robin: (Calmly, but with a hint of urgency:) “Excuse me.”
(Robin turns and walks quietly out of the cave. Little John frowns, wondering why Robin would leave at a time like this, and watches him go. Pitts glances around nervously to see if anybody else has recognised the ruse.)
Exterior.
(Robin runs, retracing the route he and Pitts took earlier. He stops and looks around, then continues on. He stops again as sees a flash of white on the ground. He runs to it and anxiously looks around before picking up the discarded bandage. He runs as fast as he can down the trail and finds another, then pulls it off a sapling’s branch. He runs a bit further and finds another bandage hanging off a branch. He looks around for any unwelcome guests and hears a horse whinny in the distance.)
Robin: (Quietly to himself:) “What have I done?”
(He hears more horses and dogs barking and sees the Sheriff coming through the trees. He runs back to the cave.)

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Interior.
(Little John is carrying another torch to the back as Robin runs in calling for them.)
Robin: (From outside:) “Much! John! (Little John jumps. Entering:) Your weapons, now!”
Much: “Why?”
Robin: (Pulling arrows from his quiver by the fire:) “Unless I am badly mistaken, [turns to pick up his bow] the Sheriff and Gisborne will arrive at any moment. We’ll be surrounded.”
(Little John puts on his coat. Much runs in from the back room.)
Much: (Panicked:) “What? We’ve got to run!” (Starts to run outside.)
Robin: “We cannot run! I cannot run! (Little John picks up his staff. Quieter:) Marian.”
Little John: “We do not run.” (Goes to the cave entrance.)
Much: “We are trapped in a cave and surrounded. We’re all gonna die!”
Robin: (Quietly:) “Yes.” (Looks at Much.)
Much: “Oh, Lord. (Little John looks out at the forest. Slams down his cloak.) Allan. Where is Allan? And Will?! Where are they?! (Much slams down a handful of arrows as Little John walks back to them. Much picks up his sword belt and fumbles to put it on.) I thought if I survived the Holy Land, then I would die by the fire in Locksley, not in some… forest in some…some poxy, [kicks dirt into the fire] poxy cave!”
Robin: “Much!”
Much: “What?!”
Robin: “Let me think! (Pitts walks away from Marian towards Robin, laughing sinisterly. Robin stands up. With quiet intensity:) You.”
(Much looks back at Pitts.)
Pitts: “What did you think? That Gisborne did not tell me that one day somebody might come asking about his alibi? That we did not have a plan in place for just this occasion? (Sighs.) The charade is over. (Starts to walk past Robin, nodding once at him with his eyebrows raised, then stops beside him.) Oh, your friend is dead.”
(Pitts continues on towards the exit as Robin turns in horror to the back room.)
Much: “Dead?”
Pitts: (Turning to Much without stopping:) “Dead!” (Robin hurries to Marian. Much looks after him in disbelief. Little John turns his staff to horizontal and stops Pitts from leaving.)
(In the back, Robin stops and looks fearfully at Djaq. She turns to him, the sad look on her face confirming what Pitts has just said.)
Djaq: “Robin. I’m sorry.”
(Djaq walks over to him, then decides to leave him alone with Marian.)     

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Exterior.
(Little John and Much go outside to face the Sheriff. Crouching behind a large boulder on a rise, Much slams arrow points into the ground as Little John peeks over another boulder next to him. They hear horses coming, men shouting and dogs barking.)
Interior.
(Robin starts to sob, taking a few steps towards Marian. He stops to stare at her, then slowly kneels at her side, sobbing

and sniffing. He strokes her face.)
Robin: (Softly:) “Marian. (Puts both hands on the sides of her face.) Marian! (He turns his head aside, then briefly places it on her chest and sobs, then looks in her eyes.) Marian… I love you. I should have said. Why did I not say? I love you. Marian. I love you. (Sobs.) Marian.”
(Robin kisses her lips, then leans on her chest and cries uncontrollably.)
Sheriff: (From outside the cave, singsong:) “Robin? Oh, Robin? Come out, come out wherever you are!”
(Robin slowly raises his head with an intense look of rage and revenge in his eyes.)