Different Directions (pt.6)

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Nottingham Castle. Courtyard. Before dawn.
(A milk cart,
made to look like three barrels standing in a closed wood rack, is led
through the main gate by a farmer. Once at a safe place inside, the
farmer taps the cart and the side flips open. From the open space under
the half-barrels, Allan slides out, then Will, holding his broadaxe.
They peek back round the corner to see two guards barring the gate
again. Allan pulls out his knife and Will his hand axe, and they sneak
up behind the guards and knock them out with a punch each to the helmet,
then open the gate again. Little John checks to be sure it’s Will, then
he, Much, Roy and Robin run through into the deserted courtyard. Allan
takes off for the kitchens as the rest run up the side steps and down
the corridor to the dungeon door.)
North exterior corridor.
(Will
hands his broadaxe to Much, goes to the dungeon door and raps at it in
several places with his knuckles, listening for a weak spot. He finds
it, sets his chisel and starts tapping at it with the hammer end of his
hand axe.)
Kitchens.
(Unable to sleep, Clarke is preparing herself something to eat when Allan finds her.)
Allan: “Clarke?”
Clarke: (Turns to Allan.) “Allan!”
Allan: (Walks up to her.) “I’ve been looking all over the castle. We’ve come to rescue you. (Clarke smiles and notices Allan looking at her food. She breaks it in half and hands it to Allan. Allan takes it and nods his thanks.) Always better to rescue someone on a full stomach.”
Dungeon door.
(Will
has successfully chiselled two blocks out of the door. He pushes the
upper one through the door, blows away the shavings, peers through the
hole, then reaches inside and finds the hinge. He pulls it out, holding
it up to the gang, then steps aside for Little John, who shoves a
shoulder into the door and knocks it down. Robin goes downstairs first,
stepping over the door, followed by Roy, Much, Little John and Will.
They creep past empty cells.)
Roy: (Whispers:) “Mother? Mother? Mother? Mother?”
Little John: (Whispers:) “Mary? Mary?“
(They
all whisper “Mary” or “Mother” as they walk through to the end, finding
all the cells empty. Then the Sheriff’s voice comes from behind.)
Sheriff: (Whispering:) “Mary, Mary! Mary, Mary!”
Roy: (Steps forward.) “Where is she? What you done wi’ her?”
Sheriff: “Gisborne, what do you think? Does that look like the first light of day?”
Gisborne: (Glances up.) “Mm-hm.”
Sheriff: “Mm, well, I kept my part of the bargain. You didn’t keep yours. So… (turns to four guards)… bring them to see [whispers:] Mary, Mary [normally:] swing.” (Leaves.)
Courtyard.
(Mary
is led to the gallows as the gang are escorted down the exterior
corridor towards the courtyard. Two guards lead Roy, who has an
additional guard on each side holding an arm. Roy sees his mother
through the cloister.)

Roy: “Mother!”
(The executioner starts to put a hood over Mary’s head.)
Sheriff: “Erm… no hood, I think.”
(The executioner takes back the hood as Roy is led down the steps past the Sheriff.)
Roy: (to the Sheriff:) “You’ll rot in hell for this!”
Sheriff: “Really? Just for this? Oh. (Robin and Much are next, also with a guard on each arm. Little John
has his staff tucked under his arms and behind his back, a guard on each
side. Will comes last with just one guard, who has his broadaxe. Mary
tries to be brave as the noose is slipped over her head.)
Mary, Mary’s,
boy’s contrary, time to see her swing.”

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(Springing from an alcove, Clarke grabs Gisborne’s hair and
holds a knife to his throat.)
Clarke: (Roars:) “Let them go, Sheriff or I’ll kill him!”
(Everybody turns to look at her.)
Gisborne: “Princess!”
Clarke: “Do not move! (Allan sneaks in down the side steps, his deed done.) You two are despicable! You’d let innocent people starve to death. You’re worse than my uncle. I’d rather take my chances with what lies in the forest than spend another moment under the same roof as you!”
Sheriff: “Gisborne, a woman, really?“ (Tuts.)
(Gisborne
takes his cue and knocks Clarke’s knife away, then backslaps her with all his might,
knocking her to the floor. Robin takes advantage of the distraction and
lunges into the guard on his left, pulling free of the other’s grasp,
and Roy does the same. Robin throws an elbow into the man to his right,
then turns, grabs the left arm of the first guard about to punch him,
and kicks him in the groin. The guard doubles over. Will pushes his lone
guard into the wall, grabbing the man’s sword as Allan runs between
them to Clarke’s aid. After Allan passes, Will strikes twice with the
sword. Gisborne is trying to pin Clarke to the floor when Allan runs up
and shoves him into the wall and then kicks him in the face. Allan pulls
Clarke to her feet and leads her away from the fight. Little John twists
his body to hit a guard with the staff, then frees an arm and spins the
staff round to knock back the second, then drives the butt of his staff
into the first. Robin wrenches his bow away from his fallen guard as he
parries a blow from one soldier with his sword, then turns, swinging,
and quickly brings his sword up to parry a thrust from another behind
him as he turns to face the first again. Much blocks a swing, then slaps
the guard with his bare hand and grabs the sword arm of the second.
With his eyes on Mary, Robin runs down the steps, dodging a swinging
sword, and heads for the steps to the platform as Little John is
thrusting the end of his staff into the guard. The executioner charges
Robin as he runs up the steps and he uses his bow like a staff to block
the executioner’s kick and then to knock him over backwards.)
Little John: “Robin! (Robin steps up on the platform and lifts the noose off Mary’s head. Little John comes over to help.) Robin…“
(Robin lets Little John lift Mary down to the ground and kicks a soldier coming at him off the gallows.)
Robin: “To the horses!”
(Robin
turns, jumps off the platform and runs towards the gate. A guard
charges Little John from the gate as Allan battles another one behind
him, holding Clarke by the hand.)
Guard: ”Come on, then.”

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(Little
John, with one arm around Mary, knocks away the guard with his staff in
the other and kicks him as Allan knocks out another. Roy is still on
the steps, battling a guard with a sword. His opponent loses his balance
on the steps and Roy starts for the gate, but the Sheriff grabs him
from behind and puts his dagger to his throat.)
Sheriff: “Locksley! (Everybody looks back at the Sheriff as Much and Will open the gate.) Why so much haste, my friend? (Robin pulls out an arrow and takes a few steps forward as he nocks it.) Sorry to ruin your day, but if you leave, he gets it. (to Roy:) This is our old friend, the dilemma, calling.”
(Robin draws his bow at the Sheriff.)
Much: “Master, you cannot give yourself up every five minutes!”
Roy: “Robin, no!”
Sheriff: (Waving the dagger at him:) “Robin, yes.”
Robin: “Let him go… or we all die here today.”
Sheriff: ”Oh,
come along, Robin. We both of us know, we’ve had this conversation many
times, and we also know that you’re not the killing kind! (Almost inaudibly:) But me…” (Chuckles.)
(Roy throws his head back into the Sheriff ’s jaw, grabs the Sheriff ’s arm and spins out of his grip.)
Roy: “Run! (Rips the tag out from round his neck.) For my mother! For the princess!” (Throws the tag to Little John.)
Mary: “No, Roy!”
(Little John catches the tag as Roy throws his back against the main doors. Several guards advance on him and attack.)
Roy: “My name is Royston White! (Roy crumples to the ground shouting his mantra as the guards continue to hack at him.) I fight for Robin Hood and King Richard!”
(Two
more guards run round the corner of the platform as Robin lowers his
bow and stares in horror, backing up a few steps, and Little John takes
Mary, who is crying uncontrollably, by the shoulders.)
Little John: “He does this for you. Come.”
Roy: “I fight for Robin Hood and King Richard! (Yelps in pain. Robin stops and looks back at Roy. Very faintly:) I fight for Robin Hood and King Richard!”
(The
guards pull their swords from Roy’s body and stab again as Robin stands
staring. Little John pulls at him as the soldiers start to chase after
them.)
Little John: “Robin! Robin, come on!”
(They all run out the gate. The guards chase them into the marketplace, then stop. The gang continue to run through the town.)
Sherwood Forest. Evening.
(The gang, Mary, and Clarke are all sombrely gathered around a small bonfire. Little John steps up to it and sets Roy’s knobbler on it, then steps back. He sighs and rubs Roy’s tag with his thumb.)
Little John: “Him… I liked.”
(Mary steps forward and tosses a red rose on the fire. They all stand silently, remembering Roy and his ultimate sacrifice.)

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Sherwood Forest. The next morning.
(Marian travels down a forest path on her white horse. Robin with his
hood up, the gang, and Clarke come out of the trees to meet
her. Robin heads straight for Marian. Marian smiles at Clarke, who
looks warmly at Marian.)

Clarke: “Thank you, Marian.”
Marian: (Smiles:) “What for?”
Clarke: (Smiles at the others.) “For sheltering me in your home. For showing me that I can’t hide from a fight, to stand up for what I believe in and face adversity head on.“
Marian: “You’re welcome. I’m just sorry you can’t return to Knighton.”
Clarke: (Raising her hand:) “We both know it’d be far too risky. I won’t let you or Sir Edward be put in that situation again.”
(Clarke smiles at Marian. She turns and moves away as Robin steps forward.)
Robin: (With puzzlement:) “Your hair?”
Marian: (Facetiously, evasively:) “It was a nuisance to wash. (Unenthusiastically.) I am going… (points back over her shoulder with her thumb)… this way.”
Robin: (Nods, deflated.) “I am going (pffth)…”
(looks and points the opposite direction.)
Marian: (A silent chuckle. Gently:) “Always different directions.”
(Marian
stares at him. Robin glances aside, realising her earlier words are
right, then Marian turns the horse around and leaves.)

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(Clarke watches them closely and decides not to mention to Robin just how Marian got her haircut.)
Will: (Approaching from behind, to Clarke:) “So, (As Clarke turns to face him:) Do you know where these savages are located?”
Clarke: (As Much and Allan move to join the conversation:) “Not exactly. (To all of them:) You all believe me then?”
Allan: “Well, it does sound a little fishy to me. I mean, surely we’d’ve seen something ourselves by now.”
Will: “That’s cause we’ve stuck to what’s familiar.”
Much: “Robin, Will and I grew up around here, we know these woods.”
Will: “And we’ve got lost in these woods too. (At Much’s look.) Let’s face it, we don’t know what’s hiding in here.”
Allan: (Closing his eyes, wincing:) “Yeah, but do we wanna know?”
Clarke: “I think we’re going to have to, if we’re going to survive out here.”
Much: “We? Are you planning on joining our gang, Princess?”
Clarke: “It’s Clarke, remember? (Much nods, relaxes a little:) And, I don’t know about joining as a full member. Perhaps more as a Royal envoy?”
(The men laugh at this.)
Allan: “Oh how posh, let’s get the tea and crumpets, lads.”
Clarke: (Rolling her eyes and smiling:) “Nevermind. Forget I said anything.”
Much: (Playfully:) “Whatever you say, your highness.”
(Walking back towards camp, the joking continues:)
Allan: “Tally ho, Milady.”
Clarke: “Ugh, cut it out!”
(The gang laugh as Robin solemnly watches Marian disappearing over the rise. He dejectedly follows his gang.)

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Another Type of Punishment (pt.5)

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Knighton Hall. Exterior.
(Marian is driving home when Edward comes out of the house. Marian stops the trap. Edward shakes his head slowly as Gisborne steps out behind him. She peers around her father’s shoulder and sees the Sheriff walk past the doorway.)
Marian: “Um… well….Oh shit.“ 

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Main room.
(The Sheriff sits at the table, Clarke stood to his left. Gisborne leans
against the wall behind him on his right. Marian stands facing the Sheriff, her back
to a post. Edward stands nearby.)
Sheriff: "I hope you don’t mind that I brought along the Princess. She’s not allowed out of the castle much and I thought it would be nice for her to see Knighton.”
Clarke: (To Marian and Edward:) “You have a lovely home.”
Edward: “Why thank you, your highness.”
Sheriff: (Dubious:) “Indeed. (To Marian:) Rumors abound. The pestilence is over.”
Marian: “It is over.”
Sheriff: “Oh,
no, my dear, that was between you and me, and the council of nobles.
Y’see, now we have a problem. Either I say you were wrong, you made a
mistake, and leave the quarantine in place…”
Marian: “I was not wrong.”
Sheriff: “…or,
or I say you were right, lift the quarantine, let the layabouts live,
and then look for somewhere else to house my garrison.”
Marian: “Then say I was right.”
Sheriff: “No,
you see, there’s always a catch. In politics there’s always a deal. If I
were to say that you were right, then I would lose face. Well, that
can’t happen, hmm? We must have authority. No. I’d have to punish
you…for your outspokenness.” (He gets up to leave.)
Marian: “Punish me?”

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(The Sheriff walks around the table to her and puts his face in hers. Marian stares him in the eye.)
Sheriff: “I do not listen to suggestions that you are consorting with Robin Hood. (Marian turns her gaze away.) That would be unforgivable.”
Marian: (A bit panicked:) “What punishment?”
Sheriff: (Turns back:) “Oh, don’t worry, nothing personal. Just politics. Would have to hurt, though.” (Nods and leaves.)
Marian: “What punishment?!”
(Sheriff and Gisborne exit; her father looks worriedly at her)
Marian: “What is it with men trying to punish me?!”
(Marian looks to Clarke who looks concerned for her but dutifully drops her head and follows the Sheriff outside.)

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Nottingham Castle. Courtyard. Late afternoon.
(The gallows
platform, with one noose ready, has been set up in the centre of the
courtyard. The main doors open and thunder rumbles in the distance as
Marian steps out bravely in a light grey sack dress with a rope belt.
Her hair is loose and her hands are tied behind her back. She passes Clarke but does not look at her. Marian is
escorted down the steps by two guards as the Sheriff and Gisborne stand
at the top. Edward stands halfway down, watching as Marian is led to the
platform.)
Edward: (As she passes him:) “Marian…” (Thunder rumbles again.)
Sheriff: (to Gisborne:) “Long and flowing. Sweet. (Gisborne
is clearly unhappy with the turn of events. Marian steps up to the
platform and turns around, head high, staring straight at the Sheriff.)
We cannot have challenges to our authority. The law applies to everybody… (puts his hand out to indicate Marian)… even the privileged. (The
Sheriff nods to the guard, who grabs the back of Marian’s hair and
roughly cuts it off with a pair of shears as thunder sounds again.
Marian is defiant, but tears gather in her eyes at the pain. to
Gisborne:)
Ahh. Wasted beauty. (Gisborne hangs his head as the guard continues to saw at Marian’s hair.) Humiliation. Sometimes so much better than execution.”
(Clarke watches Marian as she stands defiant, not all allowing those tears to fall. Witnessing such strength of character inspires Clarke not to give in and to fight for her freedom the very first opportunity she gets.)

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Tess’s barn. Interior. Night. Thunderstorm.
(Roy sits with
his arms wrapped round his knees and the dagger dangling from his hand,
leaning between two barrels and staring miserably at the floor. Robin is
sleeping in front him on a short bench with his feet resting on a large
sack. Much has fashioned a hammock from a net. Little John sleeps in
the straw behind them. Roy looks up at Robin, who starts to thrash and
breathe erratically in his sleep. He is having a nightmare, triggered by
the mention of the incident earlier.)
Robin’s Nightmare: (In
the Holy Land, a Saracen dashes into the King’s tent. Robin is asleep
when he is awakened by swords crashing. He hurries to King Richard’s
tent with a sword and knocks away the Saracen’s blade, who was ready to
plunge his sword into the King. The Saracen stands over him…
Suddenly
Robin’s eyes open for real and he sees Roy standing over him, driving
the dagger towards his chest. Robin grabs Roy’s wrist. Roy puts his
other hand on top to get more force on it, but Robin manages to keep it
pointed over his shoulder.)

Robin: “Roy, what are you doing?!”
Roy: (Desperately, crying:) “Sorry!”
(Robin sits up, keeping Roy’s hands above him, and throws his arms round Roy’s waist. Much wakes up.)
Much: (Terrified for Robin, thrashing, trying to get out of his hammock:) “Master! Get up! Wake up!”
(Robin pushes Roy to the floor and pins him there as the others rise. Will and Allan pull Robin off Roy.)
Robin: (Roars with indignation:) “What are you doing?! We came to rescue you! Every man here was willing to risk his life for you!”
Roy: (Distraught:) “I’ve gotta kill him! I’ve gotta kill him!”
(Roy lies on the ground, not moving, and Robin stands up.)
Robin: “In war, a rescued man owes his life to his rescuers! (Will and Allan help Roy stand.) He gives his life like that for the men who saved him!”

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Little John: “What is going on?”
Much: (Furiously, pointing at Roy:) “This one tried to kill Robin.”
Little John: (In utter disbelief:) “What? (Will is holding Roy by one arm and glaring at him.Stepping towards Roy:) Ffff, ffff. (Little John looks at Robin, confused, and sees Robin is not disputing it. He faces Roy, rage boiling.) You were like my son! (He
stares fiercely at Roy, starts to turn away, then punches him. Roy
spins backwards out of Will’s grip and Little John charges him.)
My son!”
(Robin,
Much and Allan catch and hold Little John away from Roy. Little John is
still screaming at Roy, who is cowering against the wall. Roy, Will and
Little John are all shouting simultaneously.)
Roy: ”Kill me!”
Little John: “I… will… kill… you!”
(Robin, Much and Allan manage to push Little John to the ground, but Little John keeps trying to get up again.)
Robin: “John, leave it!”
Little John: “I’ll kill him!”
Robin: “John, that’s enough!”
Little John: “Kill him!”
(Robin somehow wrestles the large man back down and grabs his head.)
Robin: “Listen to me! Listen to me! (Little John grudgingly stops struggling.) That’s enough. Enough. I need to think. Stop. Now. (Robin
glances back at Roy, then gets up. Little John stands up. Robin turns
away, his hand over his arrow wound, and Much glares at Roy. Little John
spits at Roy, then sits down. The others relax and Robin sits down on
the bench,still holding his arm and catching his breath as thunder
rumbles. He looks at Roy, who is still cowering miserably against the
wall.)
What have I ever done to you to make you want to kill me?”
Roy: (Crying:) “My mother. They’ve got me mother.”
Robin: (Pauses, realising Roy’s dilemma.) “And they will kill her… unless you kill me first.”
Roy: ”She’ll hang at dawn.”
(Robin sighs and looks down as everyone else finally understands the situation.)
Will: (Spitefully:) “I hate the Sheriff.”
(Much looks at Robin, who walks over to Roy and squats by him.)
Robin: (Softly:) “And the story about the savages in the forest? That was a lie, too?”
Roy: (Shakes his head.) “No….but I don’t know where they are.”
(Robin looks at Much.)
Much: “Well, that doesn’t mean that you can go around killing my master.”
(Roy thrashes his head around, utterly devastated.)
Robin: “Come on.”
(Turns and walks determinedly away from Roy.)
Much: ”What?”
Robin: “We have a mother and a Princess to rescue before sunrise.”
(Robin bends over the haystack to collect his weapons as Roy looks up in disbelief and gratefulness, catching his breath.)

Injuries & Arguments (pt.4)

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A small cottage between Clun and Knighton. Exterior.
(The
sky is grey. Marian stops the trap in front of the house. Roy walks
behind the cart and Robin sits in the back of the trap holding his arm. Marian gets
out and steps to Tess standing out front.)
Marian: “Do you know me?”
Tess: (Bows.) “Lady Marian.”
Marian: “No, you have not seen me, understand?”
Tess: (Obviously does not, but agrees.) “As you wish.”
Marian: “Can you help me?”
(Tess looks at Robin, nods and turns to go inside.)
Interior.
(Robin
and Marian sit on the narrow bed. Marian is preparing to stitch up the
wound in Robin’s arm.)
Marian: “This needle is thick and blunt. Are you prepared?”
Robin: (Affectionately:) “It’s the way you sell it.”
Marian: “You’ll need to take off your shirt.”

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(Robin gingerly pulls off his shirt, mostly with his good arm. Marian
notices a rough and wicked-looking scar on the left side of Robin’s
chest. She looks up at him, frowning slightly.)
Robin: “Saracen attack on the King. Caught us unawares. To this day I do not know how.” (Drops his shirt on the floor.)
Marian: (Picks up a cloth.) “Is this why you returned?”
Robin: (Nods slightly. Looking up, away from Marian:) “The stitching became infected, I took a fever, (Marian dips the cloth in a bowl of water.) and when I awoke, the King had gone south… (looks at Marian)… and left orders for me to return to fully recover.”
Marian: (Snippily:) “So you return and take instantly to the woods?”
(Robin turns his head away and scoffs. Marian puts the cloth roughly to his wound, her chance to cause pain back.)
Robin: (In pain:) “Ah!”
Marian: (With eyes on her work:) “It must be clean or you will take another fever.”
(Marian
continues dabbing at his arm as Robin looks away, grudgingly letting
her continue. She puts down the cloth and picks up the needle. He looks
at his wounded arm, then at Marian, who is getting ready to stitch.)
Robin: (Sincerely:) “I never thanked you for the letter you sent (Marian looks at him.) about my father. It meant a lot to me knowing you were with him at the end.”
Marian: (Looking down at Robin’s wound.) “It was the least I could do. We remained close even after you left. He never did touch a drop of alcohol again.”
Robin:
“I’m glad. Thank you, Marian.”
Marian:
(Not meeting his gaze:) “You’re welcome.”

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Robin: (His curiosity getting the better of him:) “So, you never told me. When I was in the Holy Land, you must have had suitors. (Marian pierces Robin’s skin with the needle. In pain:) Ah!”
Marian: (Flatly, eyes on the wound:) “I must have.”
Robin: “Well, it is surprising you are not married.”
Marian: “It is… (looks up at Robin icily)… and yet when one considers that marriage requires a man, perhaps not. (Robin sniggers, smiling slyly.) A word of advice. Your charms, such as they are, ceased working on me at least five years ago.”
Robin: (Grinning:) “A challenge!”
Marian: “A statement.”
(Marian briefly pushes her ring finger against the thread, pulling on his wound.)
Robin: (In pain:) “Ow!”
Marian: (Sarcastically:) “That hurt?”
Robin: “Yes!”
Marian: (Evilly satisfied:) “Good. (Robin glances down at his arm. Pleasantly:) Just tying off.”
(Robin looks in her eyes while she ties the knot, then leans in with a cunning smile.)
Robin: “Kiss it better? (Marian pulls the knot tight. In pain:) Ah!”
Marian: “Done.”
(Robin looks at the stitch, then bends down for his shirt while Marian dips her hands in the water bowl.)

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Exterior.
(Roy is pressed against the house, looking through the window at Robin. Tess comes round the corner with a tray and sees him.)
Tess: “Are you spying? (Roy jumps back, startled.) Up to no good?”
(Tess goes inside as Roy composes himself.)
Interior.
(Tess comes in and closes the door.)
Tess: “Sorry. There are others outside.”
Much: (Calling from outside:) “Master! (Robin looks out the window.) Master! (Robin turns and goes outside. Tess follows. From outside:) Your horse returned without you…”
(Marian
rolls her eyes, lost in her thoughts. Much always did know how to pick the exact wrong moment to appear. Robin comes back in and wistfully
watches Marian for a moment before she turns to look at him.)
Robin: (Almost without thinking:) “Stay with me.”
Marian: (Taken aback, whispers:) “What?”
Robin: “Stay with me, tonight. We can think of a plan together. (Marian looks at him, daring to hope he means what she thinks he does:) To rescue the Princess. (Marian drops her gaze, smooths her hands along her dress then stands, turning her back to Robin as he continues:) No one knows the castle better than you, if you stay here tonight with me and my men it’ll be our best chance to save Clarke.”
Marian: “Need I remind you that Knighton is watched? They’ll know I’m missing.”
Robin: “You’ve managed before. At night, you dress up as…(scoffs)… who is it? The Nightwatchman?”
Marian: “I do not taunt the Sheriff. I do not publicly flout his decisions.”
Robin: (Continuing:) “I remember you leaving the house without your father knowing on other occasions.”
Marian: (Turning around:) “That was different. I was not leaving the house to stay up all night planning with a bunch of outlaws.”
Robin: (Stepping forward:) “No, you were sneaking out to spend time with your betrothed. (Marian laughs and looks away.) I seem to remember you not regretting it either.”
Marian: (Sighs:) “Two teenagers rolling around kissing in a hayloft doesn’t carry half the penalty of getting caught conspiring with six smelly outlaws.”
Robin: (Playfully:) “Well it should, the way you were kissing me. (Marian rolls her eyes and folds her arms.) OK, so today, at Clun…”

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Marian: (Defensively:) “Was an emergency!”
Robin: (Lovingly:) “And you were wonderful. You were bold and… I wish there were more emergencies. (Marian shakes her head in disbelief, missing what Robin is too shy to say.) Today I glimpsed the girl I knew all those years ago.”
Marian: (Tersely:) “The girl you abandoned in favour of the Holy Land? (Robin looks away, shaking his head.) Is it all a big joke to you?”
Robin: “Is it all so serious to you?”
Marian: “Well, forgive me for being careful, [spitefully:] but so far nobody has had their tongue cut out because of me!“
(Robin takes a deep breath, trying not to lose his temper and steps towards her.)
Robin: “Marian, why is it everything you say to me sounds like a criticism?”
Marian: “I do not know. I suppose these are the lives we have chosen. Always different directions.”
Robin: “And yours is the better direction?”
Marian: “I work within the system. It is the only way.”
Robin: “Taking a stand without ruffling feathers? Slinking around in the shadows without showing your face?”
Marian: “It is the way I have chosen to protect the people I love! (Having had enough:) I would not expect you to understand. With my way, there is no glory to be had.” (Marian pushes past him and storms out.)
Exterior.
(Marian climbs into the trap and leaves. Robin steps out of the house.)
Tess: “A storm’s coming from the east. You can stay here tonight.”
Robin: “Thank you.”
Roy: “No, no, no, no. We can’t.”
Robin: “Why?”
Roy: “Well, we’ve got to…”
Allan: (Anxious to spend a night indoors:) “Do it tomorrow!”
Tess: “Yes, exactly. Now get inside, all of you. I want you gone before dawn.”

Feeding The Villagers (pt.3)

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Courtyard.
(Roy mounts a horse.)
Sheriff: (Walking up beside Roy’s horse:) “So, you’ve made an heroic escape, I think, don’t you? (Roy sits dejectedly on the horse.) And my men, well, they’re determined to catch you. Oh, look… (holds up Roy’s tag)… don’t forget your little badge of honour. (Roy takes his tag.) Well, go on then, run.”
(Roy doesn’t move. The Sheriff turns to go back inside as Roy dismally looks out the gate.)
Outside Nottingham, at the edge of the woods.
(The gang prepare to ride into Nottingham to rescue Roy. Robin is the last to mount his horse.)
Allan: “What are we gonna do exactly?”
Robin: “Well, sometimes it’s best not to overthink things.”
Allan: “Yeah, like when do we ever do that?”
Little John: “Look! There’s Roy!”
(They
look out towards the town and see Roy running on his horse away from
the gate. Robin canters out of the shelter of the trees so Roy can see
him.)
Robin: “Roy!”
(Robin motions to Roy to follow
him. Roy turns his horse towards him as a small squad of mounted guards
start their pursuit from the gate. When Roy catches him up, Robin turns
his horse and they disappear into the woods. The squad stop and turn
back.)
Sherwood Forest.
(The gang canter through the trees towards camp.)
Outlaws’ camp.
(Roy is nervous about his impending deed, but the gang, in their delight, don’t notice.)
Robin: “It is good to have you back, sir.”
(Claps a hand on Roy’s shoulder.)
Roy: “Good to be back.”
Will: (Steps over to congratulate Roy.) “How are you?” (Shakes Roy’s hand.)
Roy: “Yeah, good.”
Will: “You all right?”
Roy: “Good, yeah.” (Steps back from Will.)
Little John: (Faces Roy, arms outstretched.) “Roy!”
Roy: “John.”
(Taps Little John’s sides instead of a hug, and steps backwards away from him.)
Allan: (Arms outstretched, stepping towards Roy:) “Hey, how’d you escape?”
Roy: (Backing off:) “Oh, you know, erm… I showed the Sheriff some of me moves. (The others laugh.) I reckon he was impressed. Reckon he were gonna ask me to join his side. (Laughs.) I would have said, “No thanks, mate. I don’t do red wine from Burgundy. I’m an October ale man, me.”
(All laugh and “yeah” in approval.)
Allan: “So how many did you take down?”
Roy: “Oh, a few, a few, er… yeah, quite a few.”
(Much walks towards his horse, unimpressed by all the jabber.)
Allan: “What, a hundred? Two?”
Roy: “Well, not that many. Come off it.”
(The others continue to talk and joke.)
Much: (Mutters:) “Moves.” What does that mean? (Much looks at Roy’s horse, then has an idea and turns back to the gang.) Stop. Stop! He’s going to kill us!” (Points at Roy.)
Roy: “You what?”
Allan: “Who?”
Much: (Pointing:) “Him!”
Robin: “Much?” (Looks questioningly at Much.)
Much: (Frustrated that no-one understands:) “The horse! It’s the same trick! They’ve tracked us! (Robin goes over to Roy’s horse, touching Much’s shoulder as he passes.) He’s led them right to us! We’re done for.”
(Robin picks up the horse’s foot, looks at it, and shakes his head back at the gang.)
Will: (Whispers admonishingly:) “Much.”
Much: “Well, it was possible. You’ve got to admit that. “
(Robin looks sternly at Much and steps over to him. Roy walks over to Robin.)
Roy: “Robin, I need to… (jerks his head aside, meaning for Robin to follow.)… tell you… (Roy and Robin step away into the trees.) Something happened at the castle.”
Robin: (Puts his hand on Roy’s shoulder.) “Go on.”
(Roy faces Robin, struggling with the task set before him.)
Roy: (Stammering:) “I… (fingers his new dagger)… I’ve something that…”
Robin: “What is it?”
(Roy gives up and hides the dagger with his shirt.)
Roy: “I know who killed Hanton and Forrest.”
Robin: “You do? How?”
Roy: “Clarke told me, I think that’s how she got captured.”
Robin: (Calls back to the gang.) “We know who killed our lads!”
(Will joins them.)
Roy: “S-s-s met me in the castle dungeon. She’s not locked up, not yet anyway. (Will is horrified.) It
turns out we’re not alone in the forest… There are, well she called ‘em savages. She
must have been running from them and ran straight into the Sheriff.”
Will: “Well what can we do? We can’t leave the forest, we’ll all get caught.”
(Will turns and walks away, considering this new information.)
Roy: “Well, look, she didn’t say exactly where they are but I think I might know where to start looking. You and I, we should take a look, scout it out, you know?”
(Much walks over.)
Much: “Are we moving on?”
Robin: “No. (Thinking:) Erm… meet at sunset at the longstone.”
Much: “Where are you going?”
Robin: (to Roy:) “Scouting. Roy thinks he knows where to start looking for the killers. Come on.”
(Robin and Roy turn to leave.)
Much: “Well, should I come?”
Roy: (Quickly:) “Er, no! More than two we attract attention.”
(Roy follows Robin. Much tries not to show his jealousy that Roy gets to go with Robin instead of him.)
Much: “Ah, good. I’ll stay here, sort things out. I thought we could have rabbit, you know, for supper.”

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Outside Locksley Manor.
(Marian sits in front of a wagon laden with food. Gisborne comes out with the last basket of bread and places it in the wagon.)
Gisborne: “Marian are you sure about this?”
Marian: “These people must be fed or they will die Sir Guy, despite what the Sheriff thinks.”
Gisborne: “You know if you’re caught I cannot help you. The Sheriff gives me position and power that I…”
Marian: “I know Guy, I can’t ask you to risk being seen defying him. Thank you for donating all this food for the cause.“ (Climbing back upon his horse)
Gisborne: "You’re welcome M’lady, just be careful.” (He leaves)
Outside Clun.
(Marian is driving to the village. Peter, one of the Sheriff ’s guards, approaches and Marian halts the horse.)
Peter: “Lady Marian.”
Marian: (Smiling pleasantly:) “Good day.”
Peter: “What can I do for you?”
Marian: “I need five minutes in the village.”
Peter: “Ah, that I cannot do.”
Marian: (Smiles:) “Please.”
Peter: “I cannot.”
Marian: (A bit more demanding, but still politely:) “Please.”
Peter: “No!”
Marian: (Firmly:) “Step aside. I have business in the village.”
Peter: “There is a quarantine. Surely you know that. Pestilence.”
Marian: “The pestilence is long gone. You know that. And if you don’t, you are a fool.”
Peter: “Sheriff’s orders, I cannot let you in.”
Marian: “I am the daughter of the old sheriff and I am ordering you to step aside! The people in here are starving.”
(A
second guard pulls the canvas off the back of the trap, revealing
bushels of bread and meat pies. Peter walks over to get a closer look
and picks up a pie. Marian remains seated, uneasy as two more guards
gather round her.)
Peter: “If the Sheriff knew your game, he’d have your guts for garters. I’m right, aren’t I?” (Takes a bite of pie.)
Marian: (Pleads:) “The pestilence is gone. These people need food.”
Peter: “Oh, oh! (Throws the pie back in the basket and steps back to Marian.) Nice pie! Now how about a kiss to go along with that. What do you say, my lady?”
(He puts a hand on Marian arm. She jerks it away.)
Marian: “Don’t you touch me!“

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(An arrow splits the distance between them and lands in a loaf of
bread behind Marian. Robin and Roy, who just shot the
arrow with a longbow, sit on their motionless horses, Roy nocking
another arrow.)
Robin: “Everybody still, if you please! (Robin
and Roy ride up to the cart as Marian rolls her eyes at the
interruption. Robin dismounts, flippantly to Marian:)
Having a little trouble?”
Marian: (Quietly, annoyed:) “Nothing I cannot resolve myself, thank you.”
Robin: (to Peter:) “Sword.”
(Peter makes no move, so Robin takes his sword from its scabbard.)
Marian: (Eases her tone.) “The village has been starved. (Robin continues around, taking away all the swords.) The disease is gone but the Sheriff has not lifted the quarantine. He wants the village for accommodation.”
Robin: “Roy, tie them. (The
guards walk away with Roy and his bow after them. Robin walks back to
Marian, whose eyes are narrowed at him. Arrogantly, mischievously:)
And what was your plan? To sweet-talk the guards? (Smiling:) Tt-tt-tt-tt. Bad idea.”
Marian: (Piqued:) “Oh, and you have a better one?”

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(Arrows sail over the barricades and land in the village, pies and
bread skewered on them. Robin smiles at Roy, thoroughly and vainly
enjoying himself, as Roy shoots a round loaf into a fence post.)
Man: “Look! It’s bread! Quick everyone!”
Woman: “Run, run! Come on, quickly! Quickly!”
(The villagers take up the food and eat hungrily.)
Man/Woman: “Bless you, Robin Hood. Bless you, Robin Hood.”
(Robin and Roy send more laden arrows over the barricade as Marian stands by the trap.)
Marian: “That is a waste of arrows!”
Robin: “No!” (Chuckles.)
Marian: “You could simply throw the food.”
Robin: (Nods.) “We could… (turns back to the village, then turns back to her)… but where would be the fun in that? (Shrugs. Robin and Roy each shoot one more arrow, then as Robin stands up to shoot another, he is shot in his left arm.) Argh!”
Marian: “Robin!”
Robin: (Continuing to shout in pain:) “Argh!”
Roy: “Get up! (Robin pulls the arrow out of his arm.) Come on, let’s get out of here!”
(Roy
picks up Robin’s fallen bow. More guards are approaching on horseback.
Roy and Robin scramble down the hill as the horsemen turn towards them.)
Marian: “Robin, let me help you.”
Robin: (Pulls himself into his saddle with a grunt of pain.) “No. Feeding the poor is foolish but understandable. Helping me is a hanging offense. (Roy mounts his horse as Robin rights himself.) This is no sport for a woman.”
Marian: “You cannot ride with one arm.“ (Glances back at the guards.)
Roy: (Seeing the approaching guards:) “Robin!”
Robin: (to Roy:) “Split up!”
Roy: “But…”
Robin: “No buts!”

(Robin and Roy ride off as the guards pursue. At the edge of the trees
they split off in different directions. The guards follow only Robin.)
Sherwood Forest.
(Robin rides into a wood ahead of the three guards. When the trees get thicker, he slides off his horse and dives into the underbrush and the horse continues running riderless into the forest. The guards ride past blindly as Robin sighs in relief. Roy sneaks up on Robin as he’s watching for the guards and holds out his newly acquired dagger at Robin’s head. Robin is startled, then relieved when he sees it is Roy.)
Robin: (Whispers:) “Where did you get that dagger?! (Roy goes around the bush to Robin’s side.) And announce yourself next time. I could have killed you! (They both look beyond where the riders disappeared.) Did we lose them?”
Roy: (Whispers:) “We are alone.”
Robin: (Sternly:) “I said split up! You disobeyed me. (Glances after the guards. Softer:) I’m glad you did. It will soon be dark. Our scouting mission should maybe wait a day. (Looks at Roy.) What do you think?”
Roy: “It cannot wait.”
Robin: (Puzzled:) “What do you mean?” (Looks out after the guards again.)
Roy: (Picking up the dagger again:) “Robin, I’m sorry.”
Marian: (Appearing out of nowhere just in the nick of time:) “Robin! (Roy and Robin scramble to their feet. Roy’s eyes are wide, fearing he’s been caught. to Roy:) Don’t just stand there!”
(Marian continues to Robin’s side and helps Robin up. She takes him by the hand as Roy exhales deeply, picks up Robin’s weapons and follows.)

Sheriff of Rottingham (pt.2)

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Nottingham Castle. The Great Hall. Council of Nobles.
(Marian is in her usual place behind her father’s chair, leaning her hands on it.)
Sheriff: (Coming downstairs:) “Good news from the village of Clun. No more outbreaks for a fortnight. The pestilence, or whatever it was, is gone.”
(Goes to stand beside his chair behind the table as Clarke slowly descends the staircase.)
Edward: “Then we can lift the quarantine. Feed the survivors.”
Sheriff: (Chuckles.) “No, the people of Clun, they are a grubby people, the great unwashed. Low on taxes, high on moaning. The quarantine remains.”
Marian: “They must be fed. They will die.”
Edward: (Admonishing:) “Marian…”
(Marian and Clarke exchange looks but quickly look away from each other. Not quickly enough, unfortunately, for the Sheriff not to notice.)
Sheriff: “Ah,
sweet. My dear, you have to understand, these are incapable people.
They do not look after themselves. We must not, we cannot… nanny them.“
Marian: “But how can they look after themselves if we will not allow them to leave their village?”
(Edward looks back at her, silently wishing her to be quiet.)

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Sheriff: “I agree. This is a conundrum. (The Sheriff walks around to the front of the table into the half-circle of chairs to face Marian. The centre chair is empty.) Another
conundrum is this. Whom do I tax to pay for the food for the hopeless
of Clun? Hm? Do I rob from Peter to pay for Paul? No. (Walking along the rest of the half-circle:) Simpler to keep the quarantine in place and then [turns around] after one or two weeks, we say that the village has been… (sneering:) cleansed. I may house my garrison there.”
Marian: “You cannot let healthy people die. It is barbaric. If it became known we have delib—”
Sheriff: (Interrupting:) “Interesting, hm? This fire in your belly. (Marian scowls at him.) Is this reason talking? Or is it frustration? Frustration at being how old now, and still a maiden?”
(Marian, shocked into silence, pulls her hands off the chair.)
Clarke: (Taking a step forward:) “That’s enough!”
Sheriff: (Turns and glances at Clarke then back at Marian:) “Very interesting.
(A guard approaches, whispers into the Sheriff’s ear and the Sheriff nods.)
Excuse me. I have other business.”
(The
Sheriff heads for the stairs as Edward glares at him. The Sheriff gives
one more fierce glance at Marian before mounting the steps. Marian
hangs her head, unable to look at him.)

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Nottingham Castle. Dungeons.
(Roy is sitting against the
wall in a cell, having been roughed up by Gisborne, who is leaning over
him. Roy repeats what Robin has taught him to say.)
Roy: “My name is Royston White. I fight for Robin Hood and King Richard. (Gisborne back slaps him hard.) My name is Royston White. I fight for Robin Hood and King Richard.”
(Gisborne grabs Roy’s shirt and punches his jaw. The Sheriff opens the cell door.)
Sheriff: “It would be wise, would it not, to break his jaw after he’s talked, rather than before? (Steps to Gisborne.) Who is he?”
Gisborne: (Stands up, holding Roy’s tag.) “One of his associates. (Hands the tag to the Sheriff.) Raided my stables. Unfortunately for them, I had my horses shod with an identifying mark, which enabled me to track them down.”
Sheriff: (Bends down to Roy. Quietly:) “Talk.”
Roy: (Recites:) “My name is Royston White. I fight for Robin Hood and King Richard. I’ll say no more.”
Sheriff: (Whispers:) “Oh, you’ve said enough. You must have had a very difficult day.”
Roy: (Baffled, quietly:) “What?”
Sheriff: (Stands. to Gisborne:) “Let our friend rest.” (Turns to leave.)
Roy: “What’s happening here?”
Sheriff: (Turns back around and holds his finger near his lips.) “Shh. Shh-shh-shh-shh.”
(The Sheriff motions to Gisborne with his finger and they both go to stand outside Roy’s cell.)
Gisborne: “He’ll not talk, I can assure you, unless he is beaten.”
Sheriff: (Twirling the tag around his finger:) “First, find out if he has any relatives in Nottingham.” (Leaves the dungeons.)

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(Gisborne turns around to stare at Roy a moment, then as he turns to leave, Clarke approaches.)
Gisborne: “You can’t be here Princess. Unless you’re looking to see which cell you’d like for yourself?”
Clarke: (Flatly:) “Hm, I didn’t realise you were funny too. I have a message from Lady Marian, she’s waiting for you in your office.”
(Roy perks up at the sight of Clarke. Gisborne glances at Roy, then leaves without a word. Clarke continues on to Roy’s cell. Roy scrambles to the
door as Clarke kneels and speaks through the bars.
)
Clarke:
(Whispering:) “What are you doing here?”
Roy: “We er, (Lamely:) came to rescue you?”
Clarke: “You’re doing an excellent job.”
Roy: “We were supposed to draw Gisborne out, trade him for you. But things went wrong.”
Clarke: “Obviously. (Looking behind her quickly to check no one is coming:) Listen, your friends..”
Roy: “We found ‘em this morning. I’ll kill the Sheriff first chance I get.”
Clarke: “Shh. It wasn’t the Sheriff, I saw it happen. You, Robin and his men are in danger. There are savages in Sherwood forest. I don’t know how many, but dozens at least.”
Roy: (Frowning:) “You what? Savages?”
Clarke: “Yes, you saw what they did to your friends. You’re all in danger.”
Roy: (Eyes widening:) “W-what do we do?”
Clarke: “I’m going to find a way of getting you out of here, then you’re going to warn Robin.”
Roy: “But what about you?”
Clarke: “Don’t worry about me, I’m safe for now. (Glances behind her again.) I’ve got to go.”
(Clarke leaves as Roy wonders about what exactly is lurking in the forest.)

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Nottingham Castle. Gisborne’s Office.
(Marian is sitting
alone at Gisborne’s desk composing herself after her humiliation at the
Council meeting when Guy enters. He is surprised but pleased to see
her.)

Gisborne: “Lady Marian, I’d have thought you would’ve left this place with your father by now.”
Marian: “Forgive me Sir Guy, I did not wish to be around anybody until I had gathered my thoughts.”
Gisborne: (Smiling) “Do you wish me to leave my own office?”
Marian: (Looking to him and returning the smile:) “No, Of course not. That would make two of us being silly.”
(They both remain silent as Gisborne moves to perch himself on the desk beside where Marian is seated.)
Marian: (Suddenly, frustratedly:) “How can you work for a man that would knowingly allow people to die to make room for his Garrison?”
(Gisborne looks at her for a moment before answering.)
Gisborne: “The
Sheriff and I do not always agree on matters of the people, but I do
believe he is the type of man Nottingham needs to restore order.”
Marian: (Incredulous:) “By ordering their deaths?!”
Gisborne: “As far as I’m aware, the Sheriff has merely extended the quarantine for another fortnight so that-”
Marian: (Interrupting) “Those people will die if they’re not fed and you’re going along with it. (Accusingly) You’re an accomplice in all of this.”
(Gisborne
sighs, stands and walks slowly towards the door. Marian nervously looks down
at her hands, knowing she has gone too far with her outbursts.)

Gisborne: “You
know Marian, it really was a shame you could not come to Locksley Manor
for my housewarming celebrations. There was quite the feast (Marian says nothing, still looking at her hands. Gisborne leans against the door and continues.) And, as fate would have it, there is far too much food left. (Shakes his head in false despair:) My pantry is practically overflowing. (Marian slowly raises her head to look over at Gisborne.) Perhaps you would help me find a solution to my plight?”
(He
raises an eyebrow, smirks and as Marian rewards him with a smile of her
own, motions for her to follow him out of his office.)

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Sherwood Forest. Outlaws’ camp.
(Allan returns on horseback and reports.)
Allan: (Shakes his head.) “Central courtyard, portcullis, all heavily manned.”
Robin: (Walking towards Allan:) “The east wall, where the builders are working?”
Allan: (Shakes his head.) “Teemin’.”
Will: “How about the south wall?”
Robin: “Too high.”
Allan: “Look, even if we do get in, I’ve heard the new door to the dungeons two-foot thick.”
Will: “I heard about the door, too, but I also heard that Robert of York put it in.”
Allan: “And?”
Will: (Looking around at the gang:)
“Well, Robert of York can’t make a hinge to save his life. The lock
side will be strong as an ox, but the hinge side will be weak,
especially with the weight of two-foot of timber.”
(Allan ponder this as Little John nods, taking it in.)
Allan: (Arms outstretched, flustered:) “What is the point of us all dying?!”
(Robin leans on a tree looking away from the group.)
Robin: “For every man there is a purpose which he sets up in his life. (Will looks up at him. Little John looks, too.) Let yours be the doing of all good deeds. (Looks back at the gang and shrugs.) That’s us, lads.”
Will: “Is that the Bible?”
Robin: “It’s the Qur’an.”
Will: “What’s that?”
Much: “It’s the Turk bible. He read it in the Holy Land.”
Allan: “Why?”
Robin: “I wanted to know what it was that we were fighting.”
Nottingham Castle. Sheriff’s quarters.
(Roy is brought in as the Sheriff is painting his toenails black, his foot resting on the table.)
Sheriff: (Finishing his big toe:) “Ah. (Looks up at Roy. Mocking his northern accent:) Royston White. I fight for King and country. Hm? Blah-di-blah-di-blah. Now look, I’ll be blunt. I have a favour to ask. (Puts down his foot.) I would be very grateful if you would, erm… (picks up a dagger.)… use this on our mutual friend, Robin Hood.”
Roy: “I’d sooner kill me own mother.”
Sheriff: “Ah! Yes, what an amazing coincidence. You see, when people say things like [in Roy’s accent]  I’d sooner kill me own mother, they usually don’t have that statement tested.”
(The Sheriff nods at the door, which opens to reveal Roy’s mother, Mary.)
Roy: (Looks incredulously at Mary.) “Mother…”
Mary: (Sees Roy and cries with relief, hand to her mouth.) “Oh, Royston! I thought you were dead!”
Roy: “I was going to come back. (Sniffs.) I was going to comeback when things were better. But they never got better.” (Mary sobs.)
Sheriff: “Oh,
yes, I like this. This is good, isn’t it, hm? The, er, the horns of
dilemma. Kill Robin or kill mother. So which is it to be?”
Roy: “I’ll not do it.”
Sheriff: “No, erm… (Stands, takes the dagger. Walking over to Mary:)
You… you do not understand what dilemma means. It means you have to do
one or the other. You have to…decide. And if you don’t, well, let’s just
say I’ll decide for you. Hm? (The Sheriff takes the towel off his shoulder and dabs Mary’s eyes.) So… shall we say… (puts his face in Roy’s)… sunrise tomorrow? Hm? I don’t know about you, but I work best to a deadline. Of course, when people say deadline (The Sheriff stoops down to look up into Roy’s downcast eyes.) they don’t usually mean that somebody will be dead at the end of it.”
(The Sheriff hangs the dagger’s belt round Roy’s neck and pats his shoulders, leaving Roy shell-shocked.)

Outmaneuvered

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Sherwood Forest. Morning.
(Having found the bodies of Hanton and Forrest, the rest of the gang have given the fallen a proper funeral. Robin sits on a tree stump as Roy and Little John stand by the graves.)
Allan: (Stood, leaning on a shovel:) “You think the Sheriff’s men did this? Those blokes with dogs who were chasing us?”
Robin: (Looking off into the distance:) “No, this was something different. The Sheriff’s men would have tracked them down and brought them back to the castle to be executed. Killing them and leaving their bodies here means nothing.”
Little John: (Not looking up from the ground, tensely:) “It means something to me.”
Roy: “Aye, me ‘n’ all.”
Will: (Defensively:) “That’s not what he meant.”
Robin: “I mean there’s be nothing to gained politically. Vaisey likes to make a scene, likes to show everyone exactly what happens if you cross him.”
Allan: (Absentmindedly rubbing his neck:) “Yeah, don’t I know it.”
Roy: “So who do you think did it then?”
Robin: (Shaking his head:) “I don’t know. (Looking at Roy and Little John:) But this will not go unanswered.”
Much: (Leaning against a tree:) “And what about Clarke? (Walking forward towards Robin:) The Sheriff has the princess.”
Robin: (Nods:) “That will not go unanswered either. We need a plan.”
Roy: (Putting his hat back on:) “I think I’ve got just the idea. (Pats Little John on the shoulder:) As a tribute to the lads.”
(Little John looks up and nods as Robin raises an eyebrow, his curiosity piqued.)

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Nottingham Castle. Sheriff’s Office.
(The Sheriff sits behind his desk in front of a chess board. To his right, light fills the room via the still boarded up window. He smirks as he makes his move then turns his gaze to the woman in front of him.)
Sheriff: “So you mean to tell me that you have no idea where Robin Hood’s hideout is?”
Clarke: “For the hundredth time, Vaisey, no. I was too busy running for my life to care about such things.”
Sheriff: (Thoroughly unconvinced:) “Hmm. You know, princess, when I first saw you in the courtyard I was most surprised. A lot of people had given you up for dead.”
Clarke: (Defiantly:) “I’m a survivor.”
Sheriff: “Unlike your father. (Quickly continues as Clarke glares at him:) You see what intrigues me is the fact that I sent scores of men to search every village to find you. To make sure you were safe, of course. (Gives a false smile:) But you were nowhere to be found. It was almost as if you had (Raising his hand dramatically:) vanished into thin air.”
Clarke: “What’s your point?”
Sheriff: “My point, my dear, is that either you’ve been hiding from me in the home of some foolish Nobleman. (Clarke looks uncomfortable under the Sheriff’s scrutiny, but does not break eye contact.) Or, you’ve been shacked up with Robin Hood in the forest. (Leaning forward in his chair:) Which is it?”
Clarke: (Choosing her words carefully:) “Has it ever occurred to you that I know how to look after myself? That after months on the run from my uncle’s clutches, I learned a few things about staying alive in the wilderness?”
Sheriff: “But by your own admission you had a group of men loyal to your father looking out for you.”
Clarke: “And one by one as John’s men got closer and closer to capturing me, those brave men lost their lives trying to protect me.”
Sheriff: “So I am supposed to believe you’ve been surviving in Sherwood forest by yourself all this time without encountering Robin Hood or his gang once?”
Clarke: “If Hood was camped anywhere near where I was, he would no longer call the forest his home. There are dark forces in that forest, Sheriff.”
Sheriff: (Flippantly:) “Ah, yes. These so called savages in the woods.”
Clarke: “I saw them with my own eyes. Why else would I have allowed myself to be brought here?”
Sheriff: “I seem to recall you not having much choice.”
Clarke: (Rolls her eyes:) “Believe what you will.”
Sheriff: “Oh, I always do. And trust me, if I find out you were aided by any nobles in your escape, they will be punished. (His mood brightening suddenly:) Now, on a cheerier note, as long as you hold your tongue and show nothing but absolute devotion to me, I see no reason as to why you can’t be my guest here in the castle.”
Clarke: “And if I don’t?”
Sheriff: (Getting up from his desk and moving towards the door:) “Well, if you don’t you’ll still be my guest. But rather than a spacious bedchamber, you will be residing in the smallest jail cell we have and left to rot. (Smiling gleefully at her:) It’s Your choice, Princess. (Clarke looks at him a moment, then drops her head.) Good. Come now, I’ve an important announcement to make.”
(The Sheriff leaves the room and, resignedly, Clarke follows him towards the Great Hall.)

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Sherwood Forest.
(Roy is running with knobbler in hand
through the forest, pursued by five of Gisborne’s men on horseback.
After a while he reaches the agreed-upon ambush point and runs right at
Robin, who is standing in the open. Roy winks at Robin as he runs past
him and Robin winks back, takes a deep breath and waits. The horsemen
gallop towards him. Much, waiting behind a thick tree trunk, readies the
long stick in his hand. Will, with his broadaxe out, and Allan,with a
rough hewn bow, peek out from behind another tree on the other
side.Robin, still standing in plain sight, holds his arms out, inviting
the gullible men in. The horsemen maintain their pace,unaware that a
thin strand of twine has been suspended between two trees. The first two
riders run into it with their shoulders and are knocked off their
horses. Much swings his stick and hits the helmet of a third, who pulls
hard on the reins and the horse rears, knocking him off. The last two
riders have stopped and Allan and Will each pull them off their horses.
Beyond the ambush site, Roy stands in front of a startled, riderless
horse, holding his arms out wide.)
Roy: “Whoa!”
(Gisborne
gallops up last and watches the last of the scene. Much, Allan and Will
each mount a horse and ride off. Robin sees Gisborne and turns his new
horse to face him.)
Robin: (Triumphantly, impudently:) “Ha-ha!”
(Gisborne stares, but stays put as Robin and Roy follow the others into the forest. Then he smirks.)
Sherwood Forest. Further into the forest.
(The gang have stopped to congratulate Roy. Robin hugs him.)
Robin: “A good idea, Roy.”
Roy: “Do we like it? I think we do!”
(Roy clasps fists with Allan.)
Allan: “What up, mate?” (Will hugs him.)
Roy: “Fantastic.”
(Much goes over to Roy with his hand up, ready for him to slap.)
Much: “Roy! Roy! (Roy
makes to slap Much’s hand, but he deliberately misses it, spins round
and sticks his tongue out, laughing at Much, who is unamused.)
Yeah, very funny.”
Roy: “Very funny! (to Robin:) Seeing it were my idea, I get [points at the horse he rode.] to keep the nag, right?”
Robin: “The nag? (Steps between Roy and the horse. With feigned indignation:) This is a destrier warhorse of the finest pedigree. (Brightly:) Of course, my friend… (playfully pushes Roy)… you deserve it! (Irked
that the others are having fun at his expense, Much steps away, after
pulling off his cap. Robin notices Much
off by himself.)
Much? (Takes several steps towards him.) Much, do not be so easily wounded!”

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Much: (Holds up a finger:) “Shh. (Turns around.) No noise, no movement.”
(The others all freeze. Much kneels down to look at a print. He looks up at Robin, who kneels down, too.)
Robin: “What is it?”
Much: “Look at these hoofprints. (Will kneels down to look.) They’re marked.”
Robin:
(Points to a horseshoe print with a large X in it.) “Gisborne is not the fool he looks like. (Looks around.) He will track us.”
Allan: “That’s clever. You’ve got to admit.”
Much: (Stands to face Roy.) “You didn’t think of that, did you?”
(Roy turns his head away, exasperated.)
Allan: “I’m not being funny, though, shouldn’t we be moving on? They could be coming already.”
Gisborne: “They could be here already.”
(Gisborne
is watching and waiting amongst the trees on his horse. The outlaws all
look at Gisborne, then Robin hears leaves rustling and twigs snapping
and turns to see Gisborne’s men advancing on foot from all sides. The
others turn their heads to gauge the situation with him.)
Much: “Master, what do we do?”
Robin: “What can we do? We do not believe in harming man nor beast.”
Much: “What?”
Robin: (Draws his scimitar:) “Vermin, on the other hand…”
(The
others look at the advancing men, then Much draws his sword and raises
his shield, Allan slides the bow off his shoulder to use as a staff, and
Will pulls his broadaxe out of his baldric. The foot soldiers charge.
Allan ducks a sword from a man and hits him in the face with the bow.
Will swings his broadaxe. The man ducks it and swings his sword. Will
parries, then ducks a punch. The guard’s momentum turns him round and
Will kicks him in the back. Robin blocks a sword and is punched in the
face as Much battles another. Robin faces his man again.
Robin
knocks his opponent back. Allan, having won a sword, blocks once, is
blocked twice, then punches his man in the stomach. Robin kicks one
man’s stomach and turns to face another.
Will hits a man in the
back of the head with his broadaxe followed by a hit to the back of his
shoulder with the hammer end of his hand axe. Robin blocks another man twice then
elbows him hard in the jaw. Roy ducks a swing and as the guard comes
round with another, knocks him upside the head with his knobbler, then
swings the handle back round on the other side to hit him again. Much
blocks with his shield, then is blocked as he swings, and blocks with
his shield again. He turns around to parry a second man and knocks him
out with his shield. Gisborne walks his horse around, watching for an
opportunity. Robin ducks a sword then comes up slicing at the man’s
chest. Gisborne raises a mace and hurls it spinning at Robin, who
freezes, not knowing which way to duck. Roy, standing next to him, sees
the danger and pushes Robin out of the way.)
Roy: “Robin!”
(Roy
ends up taking the blow instead. He falls to the ground in a stupor,
eyes still open. Two of Gisborne’s men pick him up and fold him over a
horse as Robin’s scimitar blocks, then slices through guard. He looks
back and sees one man holding Roy on the back of a second horse,
galloping away.)
Robin: “Roy!!”
(Gisborne turns his horse and canters off.)

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Sherwood Forest. Outlaws’ camp.
(Little
John stirs a pot, then taps the spoon on its edge and wipes it off on
his shirt. He notices the rest of the gang approaching, sets down the
spoon and stands. Robin walks slowly to him, distressed, shaking his
head.)
Robin: (Almost inaudibly:) “John.”
Allan: “They got Roy.”
(Robin and Allan walk past Little John. Much comes up next.)
Much: “The horses were marked. They tracked us.”
(Robin sits down and Little John turns to scowl at him. Robin looks up.)
Robin: “John, I am so sorry.”
Little John: (With quiet intensity:) “We go to Nottingham.”
(Robin nods solemnly.)