Part 49 & 50 / Part 51 & 52 / Part 53 & 54
Robin closed his eyes with the certain knowledge of what had just occurred.
Marion stood, eyes wide, staring at the place where Little John had just stood.
"What...where..." she stuttered, "Robin, you know what happened"? her voice a little shaky.
"I can't explain" Robin said bluntly.
"Robin what is going on" Tuck asked quickly.
"This is because of me isn’t it?" Johanna asked stepping forward. Robin noticed her face was pale and her hands were trembling.
Robin looked down at the ground then back up into her tear filled eyes.
"It would have happened anyway"
Lord Drake looked at his daughter then at the young man he considered his son.
"What would have happened? Robin...please..." He leaned against a tree his wound still reminding him of its presence.
"Father, you should be in bed" Robin went to the older man supporting him, holding his arm. Lord Drake smiled at the love he saw in Robins eyes "I am fine son, except for the concern I feel for you".
Robin paid no mind to his fathers reply and started walking Lord Drake across the compound towards his hut. The man looked tired and in pain and Robin insisted he rest on his pallet. "Friar, perhaps Lord Drake would like a nice cup of your herbal tea"? Robin smiled and winked at Tuck.
Johanna picked up on what Robin was doing "I'll see to it Robin" she said returning his smile "At his age, I just wish he could get better a lot faster".
Robin sighed. At least some good could come out of his "situation".
"As you wish" again he whispered and with a veil of golden mist that encompassed
Lord Drake, he found himself completely healed.
"Son..." he gasped.
"I can't explain" Robin sighed turning and leaving his hut. He looked up to the sky to see the sun dipping a little lower. "Oh well, 20 hours to go".
He thought that if he could get away from everyone for the rest of this "spell" no one would get hurt. He was walking towards the river when Marion ran up next to him. She looked up into his sad eyes and it broke her heart.
"You are always under such pressure, Robin. I wish you could tell me about it."
She said softly, "You just did something wonderful back there...don’t be sad.
I wish the two of us could just be alone in a meadow of wild flowers for an hour or so and get away from all of this"
This time Robin smiled ear to ear, dimples appearing on both sides of his mouth.
"As you wish" he said with relief and next thing they knew the two were lying in each others arms in a field of the most fragrant wild flowers Robin had ever smelled.
Marion looked up at Robin, fear in her eyes "Robin...."
"Shhhh...I can't explain" Robin hugged her against him "We might as well just enjoy this time"
"But you said something right before we disappeared" her voice was shaking
"Its alright Marion, we only have an hour. Relax." Robin reached down and kissed the top of her head. He could feel her muscles relax as he held her and the two lay quietly in each others arms for that glorious, peaceful hour. But that peace would be short lived as this spell could be more of a curse than a blessing with how freely people do "wish" for things.
Not realizing what was happening to them had anything to do with wishing, as they reappeared in the compound in exactly the same spot they had disappeared from, Marion sighed in frustration.
"Sometimes I wish we could just get through a normal day Robin Hood. That you were normal like you used to be" then she spoke 'those' words "I wish you were just like a normal human being and not an immortal".
Robin's eyes grew wide with fear as he felt heat spread through out his body.
He began to shake as Marion watched in horror and suddenly feeling a constriction, he clenched his fist to his chest and dropped to the ground.
"Robin" she cried dropping to his side but he heard none of this.
End of Part 49
By Shelly Quinn
Marion felt herself grow pale as she stared down at Robin. He was white as alabaster and still as death. She pressed one ear to his chest but could not here the beating of his heart. "ROBIN!" Marion cried. "What have I done?" she questioned, but there was no one to answer her. Tears flowed down Marion's face. "You were fine just a minute ago," she whispered, one hand reaching out to touch Robin's face. You can't die...you're immortal..." But even as she said the words, Marion realized what had happened. "Wishes..." she breathed.
"Little John wished to travel like magic and he was gone. Johanna wished for her father to heal quickly and he became well. I wished to be alone with you..." Marion paused to look about then whispered, "And here we are." One hand tangled in Robin's silky hair. "Then I wished for you to be....mortal...again. And you are. But you were mortally wounded and died." More tears flowed down Marion's face. "Oh Robin...I wish for things to be as they were. For you to be alive again."
"Marion?" Robin whispered her name.
"Robin?" The warrior woman stared down at the outlaw, stunned to see him smiling at her. "How can it be? You...you were dead."
Robin nodded. "You made a wish," he replied. "I granted it."
Marion wiped the tears off her face with the back of one hand. "But how?" she demanded. "You were dead, Robin. How could you grant me my wish?"
"I don't know how," he replied, sitting up and reaching for her hand. Robin pressed a kiss to Marion's soft palm then pressed her hand over his heart. "I don't care either," he whispered. "All that matters is that I'm here with you."
"Yes.." Marion replied, then she melted into Robin's embrace. She held him tight and felt his strong arms wrap around her waist. But as safe and warm as Marion felt, she forced herself to pull away. "We can't stay here, Robin," she said softly.
Robin frowned. "I think...perhaps...it would be best if we did," he replied. "I have to grant wishes for twenty-four hours. About seventeen are left. Hours...that is. So long as you don't wish for anything else, nothing bad should happen. I can't wish for that if we return."
Marion understood Robin's reasoning, but something told her that there was a flaw to his logic. "I don't like this place," she whispered, suppressing a shiver as a cold chill brushed her skin. "It feels....evil...somehow."
"I don't suppose it's real," Robin allowed. He felt the same sense of foreboding, yet he feared going back to his friends. As the Djinn had warned him, mortals didn't know enough to be careful what they wished for. Marion had proved that. "But...how bad can it be?" Robin countered, wanting Marion to agree to stay.
"We have to go back," she stated firmly. Marion raised one hand to cut off any further protest that Robin might make, then she made her wish. "I wish to return to Sherwood," she whispered.
Robin heaved a sigh. "As you wish," he replied.
And a heartbeat later they vanished.
Marion stared about her in dismay. "Where are we?" she asked, as she clutched Robin's arm.
He shook his head as he stared about them as well. They were in a forest, but it was dark and gloomy, and the very air seemed to crackle with malevolence. "I don't know," Robin whispered. But even as he spoke he realized that the place where they stood was familiar.
He recognized a giant oak tree and moved forward to examine it's bark. Initials were carved into it. M.F and R.F. Robin had put them there when he was twelve years old. "We're in Sherwood," he breathed.
"It can't be!" Marion protested, but she knew that Robin spoke the truth. She had recognized it as well. "Why is it so gloomy?"
"It's not our time," Robin replied. He grimaced as he remembered Marion's exact words. "You wished up back to Sherwood, but not a specific time...or place."
Marion groaned. "So....what year do you think this is?"
Robin gazed about him again and took a guess. "Sometime in our future. And a dark, bleak future it is."
"That is an understatement if ever I heard one," boomed a voice.
"Olwyn!" Robin cried as he whirled around. When he caught sight of his mentor, he gasped. The ancient Magician looked to be about a thousand years old. His face was heavily lined, his body was stooped and his hand, holding his staff, shook. "What happened to you?"
Olwyn smiled at Robin. "I lost my powers," he whispered.
Robin moved to grip Olwyn's arm when it looked as if the magician would topple over. There was a fallen tree trunk nearby and Robin guided Olwyn over to it and helped him to sit down. "How did you lose your powers?" he queried.
"Someone wished it," Olwyn replied, as shadows darkened his pale eyes.
"Who wished it?" Marion prompted, as she moved to kneel before the magician. She was horrified to think that it might be her fault that Olwyn and Sherwood were in such a dark state. After all, Marion was the one who had wished herself and Robin back here. Perhaps they should have remained where they were until the twenty-four hour wish period was up.
Olwyn sighed as he locked eyes with Marion. "Mortiana wished it," he said softly.
Robin felt tears fill his eyes at the pain he sensed in the other man. "What happened to Sherwood?" he queried.
"Prince John wished for Sherwood to be plunged into eternal darkness," Olwyn whispered. "And you granted his wish, Robin."
"It's my fault," Marion breathed. Then she shook her head. "But I can fix it. "I can wish it back."
Olwyn reached for her hand. "Not possible, my dear," he countered, softly. "Each individual is allowed only three wishes. You've used yours up."
Marion bit her lip as she blinked back tears. "I'm so sorry," she whispered, her voice breaking on a sob.
"Don't be," Robin told her. "I did this." He looked at Olwyn. "You know about the Djinn...don't you?"
"I know," Olwyn confirmed.
"Is there nothing I can do to fix things?" Robin beseeched.
Olwyn reached for Robin's hand and drew the outlaw down beside him. His gnarled fingers tucked a sable curl behind the young man's ear. "What is done is done," he declared. "What you must do is accept what you cannot change, Robin."
Robin shook his head. "I won't accept this!" he hissed. "It's my mistake, Olwyn...and by god...I'm going to fix it." That said, Robin jumped to his feet and ran off.
"Robin!" Marion shouted, and made to go after him, but fingers tugged on her arm.
"Let him go," Olwyn told her. "Let the boy go."
End of part 50
Part 49 & 50 / Part 51 & 52 / Part 53 & 54
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