The Timely Adventures of Rachel Evans: Mary Sue-ing the Legend of Robin Hood
July 16, 2013
This, in Rachel’s opinion, was a terrible time for the sheriff to finally start being more proactive.
The line of guards drew closer to the platform. Robin drew his sword, cutting John free. He glanced over his shoulder and saw Rachel still standing there staring at him. "Go find your brother."
All Rachel could think was, this wasn’t the way it was supposed to go. She saw the guards closing in on Will and took a step towards him, without any fixed plan of what to do.
"Go!" Robin shouted, bringing his sword up to meet the blade aimed at him.
"Rachel, come on," Leigh grabbed her shoulder, and they ducked under a stall and made their way along the courtyard. Steel rang on steel. All Rachel could see were legs running here and there. Someone screamed, and she peeked out. There was a sword lying on the cobblestones. Rachel snaked out her hand and grabbed it, drawing back under the stall. At least they had a weapon now. She felt marginally better about the state of things.
"Where the hell are we going?" She bumped her head on the booth they were currently under. "Ow."
"Just stay low." Leigh hissed. "There’s no point in going back out there."
"We should help. We have to do something!" This was all just bad.
"Rachel, if we get captured now, there is no one to rescue us." Leigh grabbed her ankle. "Focus. Big picture."
"But the story!" Rachel protested. "It’s ruined."
"I’d rather have the story get ruined than let you take an arrow in the knee." Leigh wasn’t letting go.
Rachel just stared at her, and then started giggling hysterically. "You’ve been saving that one a really long time, haven’t you?"
"So long, you have no idea." Leigh finally released her ankle and peered out across the courtyard. "Seriously though. We’re no good if we get caught too."
"You have a point." Rachel hated to admit it, but Leigh was right. Even if she felt like she was abandoning the whole band, technically though, it had been Robin’s plan that had gotten them caught to begin with.
They crawled along under the market booths away from the fighting until there was a gap in the tables, and from there, they darted down a side alley.
Rachel pulled at her tunic. "Come on, we better get these off." Back to being the strangers in the faux French clothing.
Leigh promptly rolled her veil up and stuck it down a barrel with a sigh of relief.
"Here." Rachel produced a pair of cloaks she had liberated from one of the booths. "These should work."
"The Force is mildly strong with this one." Leigh murmured as she pulled her hood up.
"I’m glad you feel that way because all I have is a bad feeling." Rachel straightened her own hood. "We need to make a plan."
* * *
Making rescue plans with just the two of them was slightly disheartening. They were sitting in a half-empty tavern with a couple tankards of ale that Leigh paid for using the coins they’d collected earlier. Thanks to their stolen cloaks, at least, no one was giving them a second look. The sick feeling in Rachel’s stomach had abated a little, but not much. How had things gone so wrong here? "We have to get into the castle."
"Sure." Leigh tapped her hands together. "Just a question though, and bear with me on this, but how exactly? Also why? I mean, I know you want to get Hunter back, but have you ever considered just leaving him?"
"Can’t." Rachel said grimly. "Besides, we just let all the merry men get caught," She waved off Leigh’s protests before she could start, "And if we don’t rescue them, then they’re going to be hung, and the whole story will be ruined." Her throat felt like it was closing up. Maybe she was on the verge of hyperventilating. This was exactly the sort of thing you were supposed to avoid while time-traveling, and yet here she was, screwing up a legend. How much of history had she ruined?
"Or maybe," Leigh, who could apparently mind-read as well as everything else, "We’re improving the legend. Huh, ever think about that?"
"I don’t think those are the same things."
"Well, they could be." Leigh pointed out. "Besides, we didn’t really let them get caught. We just didn’t get ourselves caught as well. There’s a difference after all."
"It doesn’t feel that much better." Rachel sighed. "What have we got to lose if we try to rescue them though? On second thought, don’t answer that."
It was Leigh’s turn to sigh. "How are you planning on getting into the castle? We barely made into the city before, and now we look like Jedi knights rejects."
"Strangely, that might work in our favor." Rachel said. "There’s probably going to be some kind of feast tonight due to capturing Robin. All we have to do is wait until there’s a lot of bustling around the castle and slip back in."
"This sounds like an exceptionally well thought out plan." Leigh muttered. "Worthy of an outlaw. Look, nobody’s going to expect a rescue.” Rachel reached for her ale. "All the outlaws are caught, except for the others who are off in Barnsdale, wherever that is. The sheriff is totally not suspecting this." Even the Spanish Inquisition wasn’t expecting this.
Leigh nodded. "You realize we’re Mary-Sue-ing the legend of Robin Hood."
"Does it really matter as long as we get him rescued?" Whatever else happened, Rachel decided, Robin Hood wasn’t getting hung on her watch.
"Weapons." Rachel said. "We need more weapons." Weapons were always good in escape attempts.
Leigh pulled a knife out from under her cloak. "This is what I have so far."
"Dude, where did you get that?" Rachel made grabby hands at the knife.
Leigh passed it over. "Robin."
"See, already your relationship has perks." Rachel stroked the knife approvingly.
"Hah." Leigh took a sip of ale.
Well, they had a sword and a knife, and a vague plan. It was a start.
To be continued...