This Friday–and the following Fridays for several weeks and months to come–I will serialize my fan fiction “Guy’s Rose” here on my blog. I’ll probably post about two chapters at a time. I have through Chapter 17 posted on the Dreamer Fiction web site, with more chapters to be written and posted. A special thanks to Judiang of “Confessions of A Watcher” blog who graciously allowed me to include her recent portrait drawing of Sir Guy. And I have incorporated it into the Guy’s Rose story graphic above.
So, let’s get started.
“Guy’s Rose” (WIP), Chapter 0: Author’s Note and Prologue
The character of Sir Guy of Gisborne was hauled away to London at the end of the BBC produced Robin Hood Series 3, Episode 2–sent there by Sheriff Vasy to explain to Prince John why Nottingham’s tribute monies would not be coming. Certainly, Vasy thought that Prince John would vent his anger on Sir Guy and that Sir Guy would be interrogated and perhaps tortured–thereby diverting Prince John’s attention from doing the same to Vasy. Yet when Sir Guy returned to Nottingham in Robin Hood Series 3, Episode 5, not only was Sir Guy well, he was confident, happy, and in command of an elite palace guard [(2) Confident Sir Guy, left]. And he was an all around satisfied looking man now that he was under the patronage of Prince John. This was quite a transformation considering the depths to which Sir Guy had sunk in his misery over killing the love of his life, Lady Marian at the beginning of Robin Hood Series 3 in episode 1 [(3) Tormented Sir Guy, right]
What else might have happened during the many months that Sir Guy was in London with Prince John [(4) Prince John, right] and was not seen in Robin Hood series 3 Episodes 3 and 4? Might Sir Guy have had a love affair to mend his broken heart and heal his soul? Would Sir Guy’s lover be a noble woman as befitting his own station–in a true meeting of the minds, as well as their bodies? Or, might Sir Guy’s lover be perhaps a wench whom he could take easily and without remorse–fulfilling his base sexual needs? How does this period in Sir Guy’s life shape what is to come in the rest of Robin Hood Series 3 beginning with Episode 5? And what happens to Sir Guy’s lover after Sir Guy returns to Nottingham? Might she be carrying his child? So, I propose brief fan fiction to address what Sir Guy was doing at court away from Nottingham those many months.
Once a weasel, always a weasel. Or at least, that is how Roseanna [(5) Roseanna, right] feels about her cousin by marriage, Johnny. He had teased her mercilessly as they grew up together when she became a ward of his family–Johnny being ten years older than she. He always lorded it over her that he was older and his mother’s little prince and that she was just a cousin who came to live with them–albeit a cousin with land and properties that she shared with her older brother, George.
Ever since Johnny was left in charge by his older brother Richard, Johnny has become completely insufferable with sycophants fawning over him and trying to win his favor–as if that could ever happen. Roseanna knows Johnny too well. Johnny plays people against each other and then he sits back and watches with a malicious glee that would make his mother, her Aunt Eleanor, cringe.
And now that Roseanna is on the cusp of turning 21 years old and claiming her inheritance, Johnny has become even more tiresome–eagerly trying to marry her off and take a kickback on her dowery, as he has done with several of her other female cousins. A marriage not of her own choosing is abhorrent to Roseanna and something that she is determined she will never let happen. Roseanna will take herself to a nunnery and give them all of her money and property before she will let her cousin Johnny marry her off to some smelly old toad who only wanted her for her money and her connection to the royal family.
If only Lady Roseanna’s brother Lord George hadn’t gone away with their cousin King Richard to the Holy Land, then she would be safe. But without even her Aunt Queen Eleanor–who is living in France–to protect her, Lady Roseanna has had to live by her wits, which are considerable. If men want a honey toned sweet compliant wife to decorate their arm, then Lady Roseanna will be the opposite when her cousin Prince John presents them as potential suitors. She eschews womanly attire in favor of breeches and tunics most of the time. Actually, except for her long and lustrous auburn brunette hair–that Lady Roseanna keeps tucked into a man’s cap because it is her one vanity and she can not bear to cut it–she usually moves about the palace grounds in London or when they were in the country palace with ease and little notice. Lady Roseanna mostly frequents the stables under the alias of her middle name of Oxbridge and she pretends to be a “lad” [(6) Oxbridge, right] –riding out into the country side for the freedom it gives her. Lady Roseanna also adopted the purposeful air of someone who has to be somewhere. And she learned to swear manly oaths that would make her Aunt Eleanor blush.
It is only when etiquette dictates that she present herself as a lady in lovely gowns and jewels [(7) Lady Roseanna, left]–usually on Sundays for church or on State occasions–that anyone realizes they are in the presence of Lady Roseanna Oxbridge Middleton, a fair lady of not yet 21 years. No, most of the time, Lady Roseanna is just the boy “Oxbridge”–valet for the Middleton family– to those who do not know better amongst the servant class working outside of the palace walls itself. She is just one of the lads. And that is the way Lady Roseanna likes it. But the Lady Rose–as her Aunt Queen Eleanor would lovingly address her when she was a child as she stroked Lady Roseanna’s rosy cheeks–will soon find herself embroiled in even greater palace intrigues than she could have ever imagined. And, Lady Roseanna will discover that rare gift for nobles who are forced to marry for power, for prestige, and for property–she will find and know love with a man for whom love has always been elusive.
To be continued with Chapter 1
(1a) Guy’s Rose story graphic composite image–Sir Guy, as portrayed by Richard Armitage, drawing by Judiang and initially shared at
(1b) Guy’s Rose story graphic composite image–rose graphic found at http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_D8VwTKAphks/TQ5I9nYhgdI/AAAAAAAAN6k/vdOKQ4QsSsU/s1600/pink_rose_petals.jpg
(2) Sir Guy, as portrayed by Richard Armitage, looking confident and in command in the BBC’s Robin Hood, series 3, episode 5, picture 92
(3) Sir Guy, as portrayed by Richard Armitage, tormented about killing Lady Marian in the BBC’s Robin Hood, series 3, episode 1, picture 122: http://www.richardarmitagenet.com/images/gallery/RobinHood/album/seasonthree/Episodeone/slides/1_122.html
(4) “A Portrait of a Young Lady” by Eugene de Blass, Image representing Lady Roseanna Oxbridge Middleton found at
(5) Prince John as portrayed by Toby Stephens in the BBC’s Robin Hood, serie3, episode 6 picture 94
(6) “Portrait of a Boy” by Eugene de Blaas, Image representing Lady Roseanna disguised as Oxbridge the Valet
(7) “Empress Isabel of Portugal” by Titian, Image representing a bejeweled Lady Roseanna
“Guy’s Rose” (WIP), Chapter 1: A June Summer Monday Brings a Chance Encounter for Lady Roseanna (PG-13)
Getting up at the crack of dawn has always been Lady Roseanna’s secret for escaping her cousin Prince John’s clutches. And this Monday morning in early June is no different. Prince John had hinted to her as they sat in church together yesterday that a stranger was coming into their midst that she should take notice of. Lady Roseanna assumes that Prince John had yet another suitor for her hand and she is determined to steer clear of him. So, she splashes some water on her face in her palace apartments–Lady Roseanna doesn’t eschew the comforts of being a lady and she still has a servant and a nice cozy bed to sleep in at night–dresses in her breeches and tunic, twists her hair up under her cap out of sight and heads to the stables for an early morning ride. But, upon reaching her favorite stallion Wildfire, she finds that there is a lot of commotion with some new arrivals as she talks with one of her young stable boy friends.
Lady Roseanna/Oxbridge: “Tanner, god’s teeth! What a commotion! You would think King Richard had returned from the Holy Land.” [(1) Oxbridge, right]
Tanner: A strapping boy of 15, he says “Ox, It’s the noble from Nottingham that has been called before Prince John to explain why there is no tribute money.” Tanner says knowingly, because if spies are everywhere, then the palace servants are among the best of them. [(2) Tanner, right]
Lady Roseanna/Oxbridge: “Well, where is this noble? Another fat old fart, I imagine.” She says rather loudly as she looks around.
Sir Guy: Shaking off the detaining hands of his captors, Sir Guy says to Lady Roseanna/Oxbridge turned away from him, “Hold your tongue stable boy! I am Sir Guy of Gisborne to you and you will give me the proper respect. I am summoned before Prince John on an urgent matter of State.” Sir Guy says self importantly, ‘spinning’ the reason why he is there. [(3) Sir Guy, right]
Tanner: “Of course, Sir Guy. Beggin your pardon, sir. We meant no disrespect.” Tanner pats Oxbridge’s shoulder, trying to get ‘him’ to go along and not get them both into trouble. Tanner doesn’t want a whipping today.
Lady Roseanna/Oxbridge: “Speak for yourself, Tanner.” She says whirling around to see what this noble looks like and she is temporarily speechless. For before her stands the most beautiful man she has ever seen. He is tall and commanding with long dark brown haired curls tickling his strong neck, large hands with long tapered fingers that could hold a sword or a wine goblet with ease, and a face with handsome patrician features if he would just smile–despite him needing a bath from his long journey and his haughty manners.
Sir Guy: “What are you staring at boy?” Sir Guy says to Roseanna/Oxbridge. “Cat got your tongue? Humbled in the presence of nobility, I would imagine.” Sir Guy says smugly and gives Ox and Tanner his characteristic smirk. [(4) Sir Guy, right]
Lady Roseanna/Oxbridge: Finding her wits and her voice, she says with an air of studied humility tinged with sarcasm as she bows overly effusively, “Beggin your pardon milord. But, I haven’t seen a sight such as yours in some time. Aye, not even Prince John stomps around the palace grounds as you do here–and this is his home.” She says flashing fire in her eyes at him. She doesn’t say that Prince John ‘owns’ the palace, because it belongs to her cousin King Richard.
Sir Guy: Frowning and narrowing his eyes, he asks accusatorially, “Are you mocking me, boy?”
Tanner: “No sir! Ox and me had better get back to our chores or there will be hell to pay.” Tanner tugs on Oxbridge’s arm and leads him/her away as Sir Guy watches them with a curious expression on his face.
Sir Guy: Muttering under his breath about Oxbridge/Lady Roseanna, “That cheeky boy has a touch of the soft life to him with his clean tunic and breeches and smooth face. Well, that must be due to the easy living here.”
Then the Captain of the Guards leads Guy away to bathe and dress before his audience with Prince John.
To be continued with Chapter 2
(1) “Portrait of a Boy” by Eugene de Blaas, image representing Lady Roseanna disguised as Oxbridge the Valet
(2) “Peasant Boy Puttin on Bast Sandals” by Alexey Venetsianov, image representing Tanner the Stable Boy
(3) Sir Guy of Gisborne perturbed as portrayed by Richard Armitage in the BBC’s Robin Hood, Series 3 episode 5 picture 62
(4) Sir Guy of Gisborne proud as portrayed by Richard Armitage in the BBC’s Robin Hood, Series 3 episode 5 pictur3 108