[An Original Historical Fiction Fan adaptation of the characters from the BBC’s Robin Hood; & a Sequel to “Sir Guy’s Dilemma”(Book 2) by Gratiana Lovelace] (All Rights Reserved; No copyright infringement intended)
[From time to time, I will illustrate my story with my dream cast of: Richard Armitage as Sir Guy of Gisborne, Clive Standen as Lord Archer of Locksley, Emma Watson as Lady Roseanna Gisborne, Tommy Bastow as the young Seth Gisborne, Lucy Griffiths as the spectre of Lady Marian, James McAvoy as Lord George Middleton, Toby Stephens as Prince/King John, Dakota Fanning as Lady Caroline Havorford, Chris Hemsworth as Sir Roderick Merton, Tamsin Egerton as Lady Rebecca Oxbridge Merton, Lee Ross as Sir Jasper, Sir Derek Jacobi as Fr. Bale, Judi Dench as Mother Superior, David Harewood as Brother Tuck, Kevin McKidd as Lord John Oxbridge Earl of Leicester, and Lucy Griffiths as Lady Anne/Marian, etc.]
Author’s Mature Content Note: “Sir Guy’s Atonement” is a story of romance and intrigue set amidst Medieval times. As such there will be some passages in this story involving heartfelt love scenes (S) and some passages involving highly dramatic moments (D). I will label the maturity rating of those chapters accordingly. Otherwise, the general rating for this story is PG or PG-13 due to some mature situations and topics. If you are unable or unwilling to attend a movie with the ratings that I provide, then please do not read the chapters with those labels. This is my disclaimer.
Author’s Recap from the previous installment: Lady Anne/Marian finally meets Baron Guy and she does not know who Guy of Gisborne is–let alone remembers who she is. Baron Guy is stunned.
“Sir Guy’s Atonement” (Book 3), Ch. 34 (PG): Brother Tuck’s Advice
Lady Marian is alive–alive! This thought reverberates through Baron Guy of Gisborne’s mind and heart as he walks toward their manor with his wife Lady Roseanna upon his arm and their son Seth walking behind them. Owing to his fatigued state, Lord John Oxbridge in on horseback with Lady Anne/Marian accompanying him.
Baron Guy is at turns giddy with relief at not having killed Lady Marian, and then sorrowful for the still broken state of her not remembering that he finds her to be in. But how can she not remember him, when all of his memories of her come flooding back to him? Baron Guy remembers the beautifully defiant and poised Lady Marian upon their first meeting when her Father Sir Edward was cast out as Lord Sherriff of Nottingham. He remembers that as his interest an desire for Lady Marian grew that later he found an excuse to visit her by saying that a horse intended for the garrison could only bear the weight of one as slight as she–and then her gifting him with a smile of surprise [(2) right] that quickly turned to delight. There were so many good and then frustrating moments with Lady Marian that he remembers.
Sensing that her husband is lost in thought–and knowing the source of it is the beautiful postulant nun Lady Anne/Marian–the seemingly calm, but inwardly distraught, Lady Roseanna makes a request as a misdirection for her true purpose.
Lady Roseanna: “Guy, our baby Diana has been fussy of late when feeding. So I will sadly miss breaking my fast with you and the others–and instead eat in our bed chamber alone. Please convey my regrets to them for my absence.”
Stopping and drawing his wife into his arms, Baron Guy kisses the top of her head.
Baron Guy: “Rose, My Love. Is baby Diana truly fussy, or are you uncomfortable knowing that my past love Lady Marian lives and is a guest under our roof.”
Their son Seth’s eyes widen as he cannot help but over hear part of his parents conversation as he walks behind them–though his Mama has admonished him not to eavesdrop on people, it is impolite. Yet Seth cannot dismiss the question as to why his mother would be uncomfortable with their cousin Lord John Oxbridge’s nurse, the Lady Anne? He senses that there is an element to the situation that eludes him–and perhaps next month when he is twelve, a nuanced understanding of adults will begin to form in his mind.
Lady Roseanna: “Are you so forgetful about the three babies and a toddler Seth who preceded Diana and their temperaments?” She asks in a teasing tone belying her troubled thoughts.
Baron Guy: “Nay, My Rose. I merely want to reassure you …”
Lady Roseanna: “No need to explain!” Lady Roseanna waves her hand dismissively at him.
Baron Guy: “But Rose …” Baron Guy tries again.
Lady Roseanna: “Guy! I realize that you must deal with the situation of Lady Marian being returned to you …”
Baron Guy: Baron Guy forcefully counters his wife’s implication. “But she has not returned to me. Lady Marian does not even know who I am!” Without meaning to, Baron Guy’s voice has become strident. Seeing the alarmed faces of his wife and son, Baron Guy tempers his outburst. “What I mean to say is that Lady Marian was never mine in the first place.” He has rarely admitted this to himself, and never out loud before. “So therefore, she cannot not be returned to me.”
Lady Roseanna: “Semantics, husband?” Lady Roseanna fixes Baron Guy with a piercing gaze, trying to discern how unsettled he is with the return of Lady Marian/Anne.
Baron Guy turns around to face his wife, pulls her over to and around a large hedge just out of sight of the rest of the party, and draws her into his arms. Seth rolls his eyes sheepishly and continues walking toward the manor. He is accustomed to his parents being tender and loving with each other at odd moments–and in broad daylight. But as an almost twelve year old, Seth has become slightly embarrassed by seeing his parents being romantic with each other. So Baron Guy and Lady Roseanna now have some privacy to speak frankly with each other.
Baron Guy: “Rose, My Love. Whatever Lady Marian meant to me in the past, that is where it stays–in the past. You and I and our family are my sole reason for being. I am nothing without you and your love. You have made me a better man.” Baron Guy leans down and kisses her lips sweetly.
Lady Roseanna: Shaking her head in disbelief, Lady Roseanna demures. “Guy, I did not and I do not have such influence over you.”
Baron Guy: Holding his wife closer, he counters with a sly smile. “But you do.” Baron Guy kisses his wife again–this time with a bit more passion. “Though I wish Lady Marian well and will endeavor to aid in her finding happiness in anyway I can–thanking God that I did not kill her, because it lifts a burden from my soul–she is not in my future, nor am I in her future. Our time is past.” He reiterates. Then he smirks. “And I suspect that she might have someone in her future already.” Baron Guy tries not to sound like a rejected suitor and he smiles teasingly for his wife’s benefit.
Lady Roseanna: Realizing immediately to whom he refers, she says with startled surprise. “You mean my … our cousin Lord John Oxbridge, Earl of Leicester?”
Baron Guy: He nods. “The very one. The tender exchange between them just now when Lord John suggested that we return to the manor and his fatigue was clearly evident and Lady Marian caressed his face, betokens a certain level of familiarity. Does it not?”
Lady Roseanna: She nods her head now. “So it would seem. Her solicitude for Lord John’s welfare that I witnessed last evening when they arrived and just now, seems more than as just a care giver to her charge. And my cousin Lord John gazes at her with such longing.” She admits knowingly.
Baron Guy: “And yet, he is a married man. Though technically, King John declared him dead and his wife remarried. And Lady Marian is a postulant nun who, I fear, is too spirited for the contemplative life in a convent.” Then his face turns somber. “But I do not know what I should or should not tell her of me, of us–and of her past life.” Baron Guy looks imploringly at his wife Lady Roseanna.
Lady Roseanna: “Perhaps Br. Tuck can guide you. He has traveled with Lady Anne/Marian for nearly two months. Surely he has gained some wisdom with regard to her emotional well being and can help you discern how much she should be told.”
Baron Guy: “You are right, My Love.”
Baron Guy and Lady Roseanna kiss once more, before coming out behind the hedge and entering the manor to break their fast.
Upon entering Gisborne-Middleton Manor, Baron Guy and Lady Roseanna see a worried looking Br. Tuck speaking in hushed tones with Lady Anne/Marian and Lord John Oxbridge. But when Br. Tuck spies Baron Guy, his face becomes somber as he looks back and forth between Baron Guy and Lady Anne/Marian. Baron Guy kisses his wife’s hand and she then gracefully walks up the central staircase to nurse their baby Lady Diana. Then Baron Guy strides over to Br. Tuck, Lady Anne/Marian, and Lord John.
Baron Guy: “Forget to mention something, Tuck?” Baron Guy beadily looks at his friend.
Br. Tuck: “Baron Guy!” He startles, wondering what upheaval will occur next.
Baron Guy: “Tuck, you brought me back to life so many years ago, you need not call me by my title.”
Br. Tuck: “Yes. Thank you, Guy.” The name spoken upon his lips seems almost foreign to Br. Tuck. “And as to …” Br. Tuck gestures to Lady Anne/Marian. “…this development, I had hoped to speak with you privately before hand.”
Baron Guy: “Yes, well. Too late there.” Baron Guy stares accusatorially at Br. Tuck for a few moments. Then the tenseness of the past half hour get the better of him and he laughs. “Ha ha ha ha ha!”
Br. Tuck: Rightly thinking that laughter is not the expected, nor appropriate, response, Br. Tuck asks gently. “Are you alright?”
Baron Guy: “Hmmm. I will speak with you privately.” Then he turns to his son. “Seth, please escort Lady Ma … Lady Anne and Lord John to the Dining Room to break your fast. My Lady wife is tending to our baby Lady Diana. Please start without us. Br. Tuck and I will join you shortly.”
Seth nods and begins to guide their guests to the dining room even as Baron Guy and Br. Tuck walk into Baron Guy’s study and shut the door. Baron Guy whirls around, now not quite so congenial as his old anxieties return.
Baron Guy: “Why did you never tell me she lived? How long have you known?” Baron Guy thunders.
Br. Tuck: “Be easy, Guy. I did not know until six weeks ago when I met Lady Anne/Marian in the Holy Land an discovered that bringing Lady Marian home to England was our late King Richard’s final wish.”
Baron Guy: “I am overjoyed that Lady Marian is alive. You cannot know how tormented I have been all these years, thinking that I had killed her.”
Br. Tuck: “I know, my son. It is a wondrous miracle–as was your own survival.”
Baron Guy: “But she does not remember me nor her life? Should we tell her about her past, about me? And what of her father being dead? Would knowing make her grieve for him all over again?”
Br. Tuck: “Having spent two months traveling and getting to know her, I find her to be a resolute young woman with uncommon resources of inner strength that few possess. Yet, she is vulnerable, too. Her recovery from her injuries was much longer than your own, then losing her identity and having to forge a new one has been difficult for her.”
Baron Guy: “And why is Lady Marian a postulant nun? She cannot be suitable for such a life. Is her vocation a result of her gratitude to the sisters for saving her life?
Br. Tuck: “Perhaps in part.” Then he winces. “It is also because she believes that no man would have her for his wife now.”
Baron Guy: “Now? Why now? She is but my Rose’s age of twenty seven. Surely she has her whole life ahead of her.”
Br. Tuck: “But it is a life without the possibility of children.” Baron Guy looks at him stunned, then he lowers his head in despair [(3) right]. “Her injuries were too near her womb. Even if by some miracle she were to marry and become pregnant, it would likely kill her because her old wounds would probably rupture from her growing in size with carrying a baby.”
Baron Guy: Staggering backward, Baron Guy rubs his face with his hands. “So my guilt is not assuaged. Not only did I steal Marian’s past in stabbing her, but I stole her future from her. Why has God so abandoned Lady Marian to his fate?”
Br. Tuck: “It is not God, My son. But a confluence of terrible events–and her own stubbornness, I surmise–that have brought her to her present situation.”
Baron Guy: “No babies of her own.” Baron Guy shakes his head forlornly. “But she was always enamored of the little ones of Nottingham–and they flocked to her. She would gift them with treats and apples–in the hope of improving their nourishment.”
Br. Tuck: “Yes, I can see that in her. Her tender care of Lord John illustrates her compassion for others.”
Baron Guy: Baron Guy nods. “But what should we tell Lady Marian about herself? What should I tell her about me?” Baron Guy holds out his hands in pleading supplication. If his atonement for his past misdeeds is ever to be judged sincere and compensatory, Baron Guy feels that he must make amends to Lady Marian somehow.
Br. Tuck: “We should let her guide us in this matter. Respond to questions she might make in general terms. Allow her to ask for further clarification.”
Baron Guy: “I can see sense in that. But I do not want to hide my past actions–in being the one who injured her–behind a ruse of treating her carefully. Yet, I do not want her to fear me because my actions harmed her.” Then he quickly adds. “But it was not my intent to do so. I could never harm her.” The anguish is Baron Guy’s voice is palpable as tears brim in his eyes.
Br. Tuck: “I know. I know. Guy, Lady Marian, might never recover her memories or her identity. And if so, we must accept that it is God’s will and we must help her to live as she is now.”
Baron Guy nods several times. There is a pause, a silence as both men reflect upon what they have said. And then Br. Tuck discreetly conveys that Lord John, were he free, he might have tender feelings for Lady Anne/Marian. Baron Guy had guessed this, but says nothing in reply. Then they cannot delay any longer and they join the rest of the family and guests for their morning meal.
To be continued with Chapter 35
“Sir Guy’s Atonement” (Book 3), Ch. 34 References, May 29, 2015 Gratiana Lovelace (Post #756)
1) My story cover for “Sir Guy’s Atonement” is a composite image of:
a) Sir Guy portrayed by Richard Armitage found at richardarmitagenet.com/images/gallery/RobinHood/album/seasonthree/Episodefive/slides/5_086.jpg (crop-hair-manip-hi-res); and
b) The spectre image of Lady Marian is that of Lucy Griffiths who portrayed Lady Marian in the BBC series Robin Hood from 2006-2009 and was found at Hamilton Hodell Talent Management at http://www.hamiltonhodell.co.uk/cv/client_lucy-griffiths_id_100044.htm; image found at
2) Sir Guy is Richard Armitage and Lady Marian is Lucy Griffiths in the BBC’s Robin Hood, season1, epi 10, pix 20 and was found at http://www.richardarmitagenet.com/images/gallery/RobinHood/album/seasonone/episode10/rh110_020.jpg
3) Image of Barong Guy (portrayed by Richard Armitage) and Brother Tuck (portrayed by David Harewood) in the BBC’s production of Robin Hood series 3, episode 12 (pix 60) was found at http://www.richardarmitagenet.com/images/gallery/RobinHood/album/seasonthree/Episodethirteen/slides/13_060.html
“Sir Guy’s Atonement” (Book 3), Previous Ch. 33 Blog Link with embedded illustrations (Post #753)