The Purple Rose

By Verenize Bernal Curiel

CHAPTER X "Reflections"

It had not yet dawned, when they arrived to the camp. No one had mentioned anything of what occurred during the trip. Each one was thinking out their own conclusions, there were too many difficult things to try and understand.

The watchman announced Robin’s arrival. The people were happy upon seeing their leader alive. John helped Robin to descend from the carriage.

"Where is Sir Frederick?" He asked upon not seeing him between the people.

"He has left Robin" Adam responded." But he left this for you" He said delivering him a letter. Robin took it with sadness and went to his hut. Knowing him, Marion and the others supposed that he would want to be alone. Robin stopped halfway.

"Do you plan on letting me go there alone?" He asked without looking behind. His inseparable friends interchanged looks and followed him.

Robin sat down on his bed and in silence read the note of Sir Frederick in the presence of his friends.

" My Son:

I know and I rely on, that you will be fine, and I know that you will miss me. Don’t try to find me upon your return, but you should understand that a man that has only bitterness and vengeance thirsting in his heart, could not offer love to other people. It was my actions alone that put you in danger and to the people that you love. The already have enough problems, with all the obstacles that they need to liberate every day.

I want you to know that I felt proud of you, as much as your father will be wherever he is. Don't weaken in your fight. You have all the resources in order to triumph and on behalf of the love toward your father, toward your friends, toward Marion, you will never permit hate to infect your soul. That will be the greater fight that you will have to win.

I have learned a lesson. I will work the few years that I have left, on trying to save my soul. With the hope of that in the end, I am worthy of gathering around me those with whom I have loved.

God blesses you.

Frederick Reilly."

Robin bent the note and waited for the tears that formed in his eyes, to return to their origin place.

"I believe that Robin Hood had not been appreciated" The archer commented" Including me" He continued without the others understanding what he spoke of." I am Robert of Locksley... and Robert of Locksley is a man like any other man, with fears, defects, uncertainties and bitterness... But Robin Hood does not... because Robin Hood is the result of the one which we contributed each one, and each one give him the best of yourself... if some are lacking... Robin Hood simply quits existing." Robin said convicted with strength in his words.

Marion, Tuck and John were filled of emotion. They remembered the moments in Gisborns castle, that they had so much doubts, and they wondered how it was possible that Robin said this so precisely in his comment, as if he knew the one doubt each one of them had felt in those moments of uncertainty and fear.

"And I know and I am sure that, I could not have better friends. And I am very fortunate by being surrounded by the people that have had the courage of deciding their destiny." Then he looked up at Marion with his intense maroon eyes." And it makes me even happier, with the knowledge that if you are still here, even and in spite of everything that has happened. It is because you love the one that sits here. Because you are convinced of that one, and because having the liberty of making another decision, you have taken the decision of remaining here... with me." Robin’s voice broke, unable to continue; he lowered his head.

The words of Robin had arrived too close to the hearts and emotions of his friends. John approached him and gripped his shoulder leaving there so that they would not see how his blue eyes reddened.

"I will prepare you something to eat" Tuck said looking towards the door so that they don't see his chubby, wet cheeks "You have not eaten a mouthful for some days and we need you to be strong" Then he left.

Marion bent down in front of Robin and with her hand lifted his chin. Some of Robin’s hair had stuck to his damp and pale face. She gently removed the dark hair from his face and looked at him with love. It was not necessary to say anything. Everything was understood. Then she approached to him and she gave a warm and humid kiss in his lips.

"That is much better than food" Robin said smoothly.

"Now you should rest" Marion ordered helping him to go to bed and covering him with a blanket.

"Your also should rest" Robin recommended.

"I will" Marion agreed.

"And why don't you do it here, with me?" Marion looked at him smiling. Robin had that irresistible shine in his eyes.

"I don't believe that the space is big enough for both...-

"Perhaps if you lay close to me...? The tone in his voice was the key to convince the woman.

Marion lifted the blanket and went to bed next to him, placing her back to Robin’s chest. The sensation was fantastic. The cruel winter only added more to make the delicious heat of their contact of their bodies. Robin embraced her and stayed in silence.

"Marion..." Robin after a while whispered.

"Hmm ...".

"Did you have to kiss Guy farewell?" Marion opened her eyes and smiled.

"I only gave him a little kiss on his cheek." She explained unimportance.

"Ah... Then it is all right... that you did it." Robin smiled. Marion had fallen in the trap. She was turned toward Robin and looked at him. He continued with his eyes closed. She observed him conscientiously... Now between humble blankets, he was he; he followed being him... Margaret was right.

"I love you Robert, Count of Locksley" She whispered to him with all feelings that it was possible for her to express. Robin opened his eyes and was reflected in Marion’s blue eyes. Then he got up a little and kissed her, for such a long time ago he desired to do it.

Tuck and John carried the food for Robin, but upon seeing the pair they retreated and were looked at one to another.

"I believe that I will have to heat this later" Tuck commented. Both men smiled.

Robin had endured so much in the past few days. It had been more things than most men could bear. He found that once more he had a lot to learn. And as much as Marion, Tuck and John, who knew that they had to take care of that marvelous being that was Robin Hood, who had obliged them to accept and to face their own fears, and overall, the one the best one.

He kept them united.

THE END.

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