Past Ghosts

By Virginia Cavazos

Chapter Eight

Eric and Nick ran into the forest. Eric kept an eye out for any of the Dukes men. The fires that Robin started were dying down. As Eric and Nick broke through a clearing, they almost ran into a riderless horse. The horse was tied to a tree. Eric searched around. The rider could not be found. The horse gave Eric an idea.

"Quick, get on this horse!" he ordered his younger brother. He helped Nick mount. As Nick settled himself into the saddle, he waited for Eric to mount. Eric handed him the reins to the horse.

"Nick, I want you to go and find Robin Hoods friends. Bring them back here. I need you to show them how to get into the castle."

Nick refused to take the reins. He angrily crossed his arms. "Why me? I can help too."

Eric shoved the reins up into his younger brother’s hands. "Nick please don’t argue with me. You’re the youngest one. That’s just how it is. Now please go. I want to hurry back and help Robin Hood."

Nick took the reins. "Okay, but I’ll hurry back! I want to help fight too."

As Nick rode off, Eric could hear him say. "I can’t wait until I’m 18. Then I won’t be the younger brother."

Eric smiled to himself as he headed back to the castle. No matter how old Nick was, he would always be his younger brother. As Eric passed near some brush, he ducked as he heard some voices.

"I tell ya they said we ‘ave to regroup. Someone’s found a way into the castle, from the side." The Other voice grumbled, "Okay then. Lets go." The two men went off towards the front of the castle.

When Eric was sure it was safe enough, he ran as fast as he could to get back into the castle. Flying through the hole in the wall, he looked up to see Robin shooting out into the forest.

"Robin Hood!" Eric called up.

Hearing the boys plea, Robin stopped shooting. Staying out of range, he only managed to clip two of them.

"Eric, I thought I told you and Nick to find my friends." Robin tried to hide the anger he felt for the boy returning.

"Robin you need to get down here, now! We have to leave!"

Robin ran down the stairs. Hearing the near panic in the boy’s voice. Eric ran to meet him half way into the courtyard.

"Eric what’s wrong?" Robin placed his hand on his shoulder. As he tried to calm the boy down. He seemed to be having a hard time breathing,

"Robin....they’re coming!" Eric panted.

"Who’s coming?"

"Lord Dukesburys...men." Eric took in a deep breath. "I heard them. They know how to get into the castle."

Robin remained calm, digesting the new information. He was leaning on his bow, when it hit him what Eric had just said.

He suddenly bolted towards the castle. Eric, caught off guard remained where he stood.

"I’ll get your father, you stay by the hole and keep an eye out for Dukesburys men!" he called back at the boy.

Eric ran towards the hole. He skidded to a stop as he saw Robin nearing the doorway. "DUCK!" he yelled.

Robin fell to the ground, rolling under the wire, that they had laid across the doorway. "Good reflexes!" Eric praised Robin.

"Thanks," he called back.

He rushed to the room. Flinging the door open, he searched for Ian. As always, he was sitting on his stool, in front of the fireplace. Robin ran to him. Grabbing him by the arm, he pulled him up.

"We have to leave now Ian. Invaders are storming the castle."

Ian pulled his arm out of Robin’s grip. "Invaders!" he roared. "We do not run from invaders. We stand and fight!" Ian ran to his chest. Flinging it open, he pulled out a breastplate. He then started strapping it on.

"Ian, we really don’t have time for this!" Robin sang out.

He tried to force the knight to leave the room.

"I think you’d better listen to him," Clarence informed Ian.

"Why should I. He’s not even a ranking officer." Ian continued to strap on the breastplate. Robin ran to help him.

"Look, the man has his own servant to help him on with his breast plate." Jack chided Ian. Ian hushed him with a look.

Robin finished strapping the breastplate on. "Let’s go Ian!" Robin was getting ready to pull him towards the door, when Eric ran into the room.

"They’re coming! They’re coming!" Eric panted out. Time had run out. Robin had to think of something fast. He shoved Ian into Eric’s arms.

"Keep him here with you."

Robin ran out into the main hallway. Eric followed, with Ian in tow. As Robin reached the doorway, leading into the courtyard, he spied five men already searching the courtyard. There were two climbing up the stairs. Robin whistled out to the five.

"Are you looking for me?" Robin casually asked.
"Its ‘im! Let’s go get ‘im boys!" One of the men yelled out.

Robin moved to the side. He grabbed the door, and waited. He heard a chorus of groans as the men in the lead fell into Nick’s trap. Robin then quickly slammed the door shut. Bringing a bolt down, to lock it. He then ran to where Eric was. Was, was the question. Eric and Ian were no where to be found.

"Eric!" Robin called out. He had to shout to be heard above the pounding of the door. "Over here!" Eric called out. He was peeking his head out of the weapons room. Robin quickly ran to the room. He gave a last glance back at the door, before he entered the room. From the looks of it, the door would not remain standing for very long.

As he entered the room, Robin had a sword thrust to him.

"Take this soldier! We have to defend the camp." Ian searched around the room. Picking up a large lance, he hefted it. "We’ll make short work of them." He then strode out of the room. Robin followed, ordering Eric.

"You stay here. It will be safer for you."

As Robin exited the room, the large door fell to the ground with a resounding crash. Ian, placing his lance in front of him, he charged the marauders.

"For King Richard!" he yelled out.

Robin cocked his head to the side. He grinned wickedly and yelled out.

"For King Richard!" He slashed his sword from side to side as he ran behind Ian.

The men had been told that the old man was crazy. From the look on his face, they knew he definitely was.

"Keep close Clarence, Don’t stray Jack!" Ian brought the point down. Heading into the thick of things, Robin guarded Ian’s back. He was immediately met by a long sword. As he blocked a thrust, he felt a twinge of pain. Concentrating on the battle, he tried to ignore it. He brought the hilt of the sword up and slammed it into his opponent’s face. As the man fell, another immediately took his place. Robin quickly pulled his dagger out.

He fought with both dagger and sword now. As he sliced into the hand of one invader, at the corner of his eye he could see Ian brushing his Lance in a sweeping motion. He had to jump to get out of the way. Two men were not so quick. Hitting them in the chins, Ian brought them down.

He then used the blunt end to knock out both men. He looked at Robin and winked. "Prisoners!" Whirling the lance, to bring the sharp end to the front, he went back into the attack. Robin started backing up. Three men broke through the ranks. They each had a sword in hand. They slowly pursued Robin. As he backed up, slashing his sword to keep them at bay, he heard Eric shout out.

"Quick! In here Robin."

Robin spun around and ran to the weapons room. "Duck!" Eric yelled. Robin ducked and rolled through the doorway. As he stood up, he ran to the side. The three men following, ducked the same way Robin did. They fell on a metal shield, which Eric placed on the floor. Landing on the shield, the three men slid into the room, hitting the far wall. They looked back to see Eric and Robin running out of the room. Robin smiled back at the men. He bowed at them, giving them a half grin. They had been tricked. There was no rope tied across the doorway. Robin waved at them as Eric closed the door and locked it.

Their cursing could be heard from the other side. "Such language!" Robin chuckled.

Robin then turned to see how Ian was fairing. He seemed to have the better of the men. His only concern now was for Eric.

"Eric, is there another way out of here, other than that door?"

"We can get out through the kitchen," Eric looked back to an open door.

"Wait here then. I’ll go get your father."

Robin ran towards the fighting, calling out. " Sir Richard’s, regroup!" Hearing the call, Ian started backing up. He had already killed four of the invaders. Clarence had taken care of three while Jack managed to end the lives of four.

"Were even!" Jack winked to Ian.

"Not for long!" Ian said as he pushed his lance into another invader. "That makes five!"

"Show off!" Jack teased Ian.

Robin grabbed Ian’s arm. "This way Sir Richard’s."

Suddenly Robin was grabbed from the side. Spinning around he backhanded the man. With the man stunned, Ian finished him off. "Let’s go now soldier!" Robin tried to stress to Ian that he had to hurry.

"You’d better listen to him Ian," Clarence said.

"Very well. REGROUP!" Ian yelled to his men.

Robin jumped up and kicked at a man just entering the doorway. His body was added the growing pile. As he landed, he clutched his side. He was so tired. When he returned to Sherwood, he was going to sleep for at least two days. As Robin and Ian headed towards the Kitchen, Robin was shocked to see Eric in the arms of Williamsons.

"Put your weapons down now gentlemen, or the boy dies." Williamsons held a large dagger to the boy’s throat. Robin quickly put his sword down. Ian just stood there. In his eye’s Eric was another soldier. The man holding Eric was a ranking officer.

"What has he done?" Ian asked, dropping his lance.

"Tie them up!" Williamsons told his remaining men. Robin’s arms were grabbed. Pulling them behind him, the men tied Robin’s hands behind his back. They were going to do the same to Ian, when a deep voice bellowed from the courtyard.

"Don’t do that! We’ll need him to help capture Robin Hoods men!"

End of Chapter Eight

Chapter One / Chapter Two / Chapter Three / Chapter Four / Chapter Five
Chapter Six / Chapter Seven / Chapter Eight / Chapter Nine / Chapter Ten

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