?

Log in

No account? Create an account
 
 
04 July 2009 @ 01:27 pm
[fic] : robin hood (bbc) - white magic, part three  
Title: White Magic - Part Three [Part One | Part Two]
Rating: PG
Word count: 2700 words
Characters: Guy/Marian, Stephen (OC)
Disclaimer: Robin Hood is copyright to Tiger Aspect and the BBC. All Rights Reserved. No copyright infringement is intended, and no money is being made.
Summary: Post 2x13, AU. Guy has travelled to the Holy Land to bring Marian back from the dead. Somewhat inspired by dollsome, except that her idea put a more hilarious spin on the thing. I believe there may have been a magical goat. Thanks so much to hulamoth for her insightful and much-appreciated beta.

--- PREVIOUSLY ---

“Please, Marian,” he said. She shook her head. “Marian,” he paused over her name, “if you do not eat, you will – I will lose you again.” Her expression didn’t change, stubbornness fixed in her eyes.

"If you don't eat,” he heard his voice growing bitter, “you won't be alive when Robin comes to rescue you.” Damn Hood, damn him. For being Lord of Locksley, for having Marian’s heart, for being by design and desire a better man than he had ever managed to be. Robin would follow him out here, he was sure of it. And Marian would run to be with him, flee Guy for Robin like she had before. He stood, turning away from her to fume.

A quiet voice came from behind him. “Robin is coming?”


---

He turned back to her. He placed one hand gently on her cheek and felt a wisp of breath on his palm. Her jaw clenched under his hand, a weak imitation of the way her body had once stiffened as he’d pulled her to him. At first. At first she had been reluctant. But then -

"I - " Marian’s whisper interrupted his thoughts. "I will...eat..." Each syllable took effort, forced out by sheer stubborn will.

“Thanks be to God,” breathed Guy. Marian’s eyes caught and held his; they were filled with a scepticism so strong it almost burnt.

There were no words spoken that day, or the next. Silent time plodded on. Although Marian seemed to strengthen, there was something still lacking. Guy could not understand it. The time gave him space to think, however. Space to remember that it was Hood she had chosen to live for. If Hood had only let her be, then she would have loved him instead. She had loved him. Hadn’t she? He didn’t know anymore. He wished he could avoid his memories, but they haunted him here as they had in England. He had hoped that in bringing her back, he would be released from this stagnation. But instead, he had become trapped. Trapped in the same cycle of refusal, and of guilt. How was he to escape it, if his attempt at salvation had led them here?

It was late afternoon. The heat of noon was fading, and Guy could walk through the town without perspiring. He left the room where Marian was sleeping, and paced among the houses. Without a conscious decision, he found his feet leading him towards the square where - he tried to push the image away, but it remained before his eyes. Her face as she had declared she loved Hood; her eyes as he had clutched her to him. Pained, accusing and scathing disappointment. Frustrated, he blinked away the tears that clouded his eyes. He was atoning for his sin, was he not? He was atoning more than any other. The tears forced through his angry blinking, clouding his vision again. He stumbled as he walked into the square.

“Guy!” called a familiar voice. Straightening up, Guy wiped his arm roughly across his eyes. Stephen was walking towards him. He gaped.

“I thought - I thought you were…what are you doing here?” Searching his memories of their conversations, Guy couldn’t remember Stephen having any certain plans, only vague aspirations. But surely he had never said he would return to Acre, otherwise Guy would never have taken his name. He realised Stephen was watching him, and attempted to smile reassuringly. His face had not taken that shape for some time. Judging from Stephen’s wry expression, it looked as odd as it felt; more a grimace than a smile.

“You look ill, my friend,” said Stephen.

“Friend?” said Guy, avoiding the unasked question.

“We spent months on a boat together,” said Stephen. “We watched many a man hurl his guts to the sea, and talked into the night. I feel we are friends.” But his last sentence lifted up a little at the end; another almost question.

“Yes,” Guy said. In truth, he was not sure he’d ever had a friend. Not since childhood. Allies, yes. But never friends. He hesitated, and then asked,

“What brings you to Acre?” Stephen looked thoughtful.

“Ah, yes,” he said, and then paused. He seemed to have too many words to speak, and couldn’t quite find where to start. Guy started as Stephen took his arm, leading him towards the fountain in the centre of the square. Guy wanted anything but to sit there, wanted to run from there as he had from that wooden room and the unmasked Nightwatchman. But how could he run when he could not explain it if he did? He sat next to Stephen at the fountain, distracting himself by running his fingers through the water as if through strands of hair.

“After you left the boat,” Stephen began, “I began having nightmares. Night after night, the same image of you; far off, stumbling across the sand, parched and carrying some burden in your arms. Every time I drew nearer, you became further distant.” He looked at Guy, his face carefully blank. “I felt…called. That God was calling me back here for some purpose.” His smile twisted wryly; amused. “And who am I to argue with the Almighty?”

Guy said nothing, but the word brought a stab of guilt. He could not stop himself remembering what he had said two days ago, and Marian’s answering scepticism. Stephen allowed the silence to stretch for some moments. He sighed.

“Well, if you do need me – ” his sentence broke off as he stood turned away, still smiling amicably despite the frustration Guy had seen register in his eyes.

“I – ” Guy’s voice husked out despite himself.

“Yes?” said Stephen, turning back. Perhaps, thought Guy, perhaps…

“I – I may have need of a medical man.”

“I see,” said Stephen. His face was becoming set, purposeful.

As he led him back, Guy doubted his decision on every second step. How on earth would he – could he – explain to a God-fearing man what he had done? But it was too late to worry about that now. And perhaps he could think of some lie, some covering story to tell. With every step, every searching effort to find such a lie, his mind grew disobligingly blanker.

But Stephen asked no questions. He knelt beside the bed, his face all concern. He examined Marian, listening at her heart and mouth, placing his hand at her heart, face and throat. After some minutes of this, he straightened up.

“It is strange,” he said, almost to himself. “She breathes, but does not live. Her heart beats in her chest, but her skin is strangely cold to the touch, as though her very blood is chilled. Or does not run at all, perhaps. Her heart beat is very quiet. I confess, I am confounded. It is not like any illness or weakness I have ever encountered. The way she is, is the opposite to how a person should be. There is paleness but no cold sweat, no fever, weakness but no coughing or…” he trailed off. “Strange. I thought I had seen a deal, but I have never seen anything like this. How did this happen?”

From across the room where he stood, arms crossed tensely across his body, Guy heard the sound of Marian’s whisper.

“It was-“

“Marian, no!” Guy interrupted, his voice forceful. Her face was turned away from him.

“Guy,” she said, with a little more force herself, “things cannot be remedied if you hide them away.” She took a pause, gathering the energy to continue, “We must bring this out into the open if…if I am to live.”

He said nothing.

“I was dead. He came, with a potion. He poured it down my throat. It brought me back.”

“Did you – did you see – ” Stephen began, before stopping himself, his face chiding. “Later. So…it was witchcraft. Sorcery.”

“The woman called herself wise,” said Guy, resenting Stephen calling it ‘sorcery’, even as he felt the truth of it hiss in his ears. “She said nothing of witchcraft…” But they had both known what others called it. He had seen it in her eyes as she passed him the bottle, and when he went back the next day as if he might return it, he felt it in her leaving.

“So,” said Stephen, his face thoughtful, “tell me, was it just the mixture? Or was there an incantation? Did she speak words over it?”

Guy wished that there was a window to this room. It was suddenly hotter; airless. He drew in breath, and it rasped in his throat.

“I - it was me. I spoke.”

He saw the fear sharpen in Stephen’s eyes. He waited to see judgment, but, inexplicably, there was none. There was pity, tense anxiety, but no judgment or hatred. Who was this man?

“What did you say?” The voice came not from Stephen, but from Marian. She moved herself, her back now to Stephen. Now she faced Guy, with eyes that still had the power to scatter his thoughts.

“She said…” Guy began, hesitatingly, collecting his words as best he could, “she said that the drink alone was not enough, that it must have words of power. I said she should speak them, that there was nothing left in me. She said truth had power. She gave me the bottle, said I should whisper a truth into it. I said,” he hesitated again, “I said I loved you.” Marian’s expression was half frustration, half pity. “But she said that was not enough. She laughed at me. She said it needed to be a deeper truth. Stronger.” He could see it in his mind as he told them.

The woman, hunched beneath her cloak in her hovel. The candle’s weak flicker darkening the shadows. The bottle before him.

“Say it. Say it into the bottle.”

And, so quietly that his breath had barely clouded the bottle, he had whispered, “I would give my very soul to have her live.”


“Is he damned, then?” Marian asked Stephen. Marian’s face at this was more than Guy might have expected; there was pity there. And yet she did not look surprised.

“I was damned before,” said Guy, hollowly. “I have killed men, almost killed my own child, and then I killed you who made me...made me more. You were more.” There was an image that had been with him for the past few days, forever circling his mind. The Sheriff among his birdcages, pulling a bird out only to crush it in his hands.

“So were you,” said Marian, quietly. She met Guy’s eyes, and he felt a familiar stab of guilt. It was the same that would cut him when he failed to do or be what he had promised. When he failed to secure her safe passage out of the castle, so that she was nearly married to that loathsome Winchester. She had looked at him with just that expression. I hoped, and you failed, it had said, as clearly as if she had spoken aloud. Stephen looked from one to the other.

“So then,” Stephen said. “You must give up your soul.” Guy felt himself grow chill.

“As I understand it,” said Stephen, and his voice was low and serious, “there are two powers that govern our world. There is God, and there is the Devil. They are the powers that have governance over the world, and over men’s souls.”

“But what if – what if – ” he could barely speak the words, but he forced them out, “what if using the potion has already cursed my soul?” Stephen looked at him for a long time.

“I think…I do not believe that a man’s soul is ever really lost while he still lives,” he said. “I believe that you can still choose to have God govern your soul. You can give your soul to God, and not the Devil. I believe – ” he forced himself to stop as Guy raked his hand through his hair, ever-increasing tension visible in his face and body.

“I cannot make this right!” Guy cried out, and there was irritation as well as desperation in his voice. “I try. I have tried, but whatever I do, it is never right. My words, my actions, what I want I can never have. The world is against me, Stephen. No one cares for me, not even her - ” his final words were out before he even realised it. His face was horror, Stephen’s all confusion.

“I thought she was your wife,” was all Stephen said.

“No,” said Guy, his head back in his hands and his voice muffled. “She loves another. But she loves me too, I know she does. She…” his voice trailed off. Oh, his words sounded so empty.

“You…are not married, are you?” It was less a question than a statement. Guy let out a bitter bark of a laugh.

“She’s married to another,” he said. “Back in England.”

“He didn’t come.”

“He doesn’t know.” At this, Marian pulled herself up on the bed. He could see this exhausted her, but as before, sheer willpower and indignation gave her strength.

“You said Robin was coming,” she protested.

“No,” said Guy, “I said – if you died you would never see him. Perhaps he will come. But the magic, bringing you back? He would have no part of that. He is a good man.” Guy could not quite stop that word from twisting, sneering. He had been so often taunted with it; by the Sheriff, by himself, by Marian, by the ever-smirking, effortlessly heroic Hood.

“I see,” said Stephen, before Marian could reply. “You have brought back another man’s wife.” Stephen paused, apparently considering decorum and then abandoning it. “What is it you plan to do with her exactly?” Guy could feel Marian’s eyes on him.

“I…I thought if I brought her back, that she – ” Damn the man, why did he have to make him repeat what now sounded so foolish? “…that she would love me for it.” He could feel Marian’s gaze on him, used to what she had heard so often before and apparently unmoved by it. He had to leave this room. Guy sat outside the door, leaning against the rough wall. Knees against his chest, he sank his head upon his arms. Stephen would not help him, Marian would not love him. He was damned.

He felt a hand on his arm. Stephen sat beside him.

“I do understand,” he said, quietly. “Once, when Joan was very sick, I bought something for her. I don’t know what was really in it. The man assured me that he had spoken certain words over it, and if I added blood from a newborn baby’s heel, that…that Joan would get better.” Guy expected to see distaste in Stephen’s face, but instead there was a grimness, a solemnity. “Joan heard. And refused to drink it. She called me a foolish, wicked, man. She told me to pray, and quickly, before I was tempted to do something worse. And then, as I knelt beside the bed, she put her hand to my face and said that she understood.” His face lightened a little at this. “And that – it helped. She knew…we are not wicked. Sometimes we behave wickedly, even when we most wish to do good.”

He looked across at Guy. “I cannot help you bring her back if it will lead you both into sin. To be with, to know another man’s wife, especially when she is reluctant, will bring you no happiness. You must decide. If you cannot have her, will you still risk your soul?”

“I thought – I thought you said I was not damned,” Guy said. Even in despair, he found he hoped for an escape, for an answer.

“I think. I hope. I do not know,” said Stephen. “I do not know you. I do not know what decisions you both might make, and where that might lead you. I think,” he hesitated, “I think that there is much on your Marian’s mind.”

---
 
 
 
leslieg on July 4th, 2009 02:50 am (UTC)
Oh, dear!!! Has Guy done a bad thing? And how does Marian really see it?

dcwashdcwash on July 4th, 2009 03:29 am (UTC)
You want to know how cracked Guy is? He's so cracked that I'm reading this and nodding and going, "Uh huh, uh huh," because, in his case, selling his soul to the devil and practicing zombie magic on an unwilling Marian makes total sense!

In other words, it's good.
with a dreamy far-off look: [tbmh] dan/charlotte | icecreamlalumena on July 4th, 2009 03:48 am (UTC)
Heh. I do believe I see where you're coming from there, although I'd like to see him as desperate rather than cracked, haha.

Thank you! :)
Dori: Robin Hood - Guy - brunette ambitioncleo_eurydike on July 4th, 2009 04:57 am (UTC)
eee! So glad to see this here! And with little new details sparkling around too. Very good work. And I love that Guy admits that bringing back Marian was at least partially (if not totally) a selfish act. Stephen's interactions with Guy are great; finally, Guy has someone he can talk to who isn't super-judgmental and who understands his need for religion.

Stephen paused, apparently considering decorum and then abandoning it.
hahaha yes. This made me giggle because I am simple. And it was funny.

(I would wonder if it would be more readable, visually, to indent every new piece of dialogue?)
with a dreamy far-off look: [rh] guy/meg | imprisonedlalumena on July 4th, 2009 05:13 am (UTC)
Thank you! I couldn't have done it without you.

I would wonder if it would be more readable, visually, to indent every new piece of dialogue?
Oh, Hula...they were there originally, but I gave up. I uploaded this in rich text to maintain the indents. And then RichText decided to dick me around. A lot. And eat some indents, and leave others, and leave big spaces where there shouldn't be any. So I gave up on RichText. What I may do is space it out somewhat, in lieu of indents.
(no subject) - cleo_eurydike on July 4th, 2009 05:29 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - lalumena on July 4th, 2009 05:36 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - cleo_eurydike on July 4th, 2009 05:49 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - lalumena on July 4th, 2009 05:51 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - cleo_eurydike on July 4th, 2009 07:45 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - lalumena on July 4th, 2009 11:55 am (UTC) (Expand)
lowen0velowen0ve on July 4th, 2009 05:22 am (UTC)
I love this! Characterisations are so on the spot. I could see Guy trying this sort of 'doomed from the start', crazy plan and see him hope that it would make everything right. It is really gut wrenching to see him failing again though - is there any hope?
with a dreamy far-off look: [m] gwenlalumena on July 4th, 2009 05:26 am (UTC)
There is, yes. Though it involves Marian being less than virtuous. But also Guy proving himself more so.
(no subject) - cleo_eurydike on July 4th, 2009 05:30 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - shezan on July 4th, 2009 07:04 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Cecilie: RH - Guy/Marian - Dreamscila81 on July 4th, 2009 11:12 am (UTC)
I love this! I've been hoping you would continue the story, looking forward to more. I hope it doesn't end up breaking our hearts though ;)
gizxmazgizxmaz on July 4th, 2009 01:33 pm (UTC)
Wow, I haven't read this story in ages! Finally a new chappie!
And great it was too! Our poor Guy... Come on Marian, what are you waiting for? He is perfect!
with blue eyes: gm blackan_lagat_glas on July 4th, 2009 05:35 pm (UTC)
His soul, oh Guy. It's so uncomfortable to read because it's so awkward--but it's so spot-on. Yay!
Shezan: Ninashezan on July 4th, 2009 07:05 pm (UTC)
Awkward is SO Guy. An he is trying, poor darling.
mokulen: kikimokulen on July 4th, 2009 10:52 pm (UTC)
Just read all 3 chapters and oh wow this is so bizarre! :D I'm liking it though and am super curious as to where you take it.
with a dreamy far-off look: [tarz] janelalumena on July 12th, 2009 11:34 am (UTC)
Thanks! Glad you like it, despite finding it bizarre. :) I think I can understand that!
nancin on July 6th, 2009 09:41 pm (UTC)
I'm so glad you are continuing with this-really interesting and I can't wait to see where you go with it. You've captured Marian perfectly-and Guy's desperate need for her too. A less than virtuous Marian? Intriguing!
ladykate63: XAkissesladykate63 on July 11th, 2009 09:41 pm (UTC)
Creepy in the best possible way, wonderfully written and totally in character. Please continue!

with a dreamy far-off look: [tbmh] dan/charlotte | icecreamlalumena on July 12th, 2009 11:28 am (UTC)
Thank you! I will be busy over the next wee while, but I know how the story will pan out, so it won't be too hard to get it down when I get the time! Hopefully...
ladykate63: GuyMarian_bwladykate63 on September 1st, 2009 09:41 am (UTC)
Just a reminder for you to please not abandon this! I just re-read it and wow, it's awesome. I am usually not a fan of the supernatural in the RH universe, since it doesn't quite fit with the show -- but this works, maybe because Guy post-2x13 is just insane enough to bridge the gap to the supernatural!

with a dreamy far-off look: [rh] guy/marian | something therelalumena on September 1st, 2009 09:56 am (UTC)
Thank you very much! I do so appreciate your positive feedback.

I am trying (ha, that word really is hideously appropriate here) to write my dissertation and various other uni assignments at the moment, which is preventing me from working on this right now, but I have every intention of completing it in the near future. I have the last part mostly written/planned, it's just a matter of completing it in a way that does justice to the characters? Rather than just 'GUY AND MARIAN MEET IN A FIELD AS THE SUN IS SETTING AND ALL IS FORGIVEN AND SHE AGREES TO MARRY HIM FOREVER AND EVER AND IT IS SUPER PRETTY AND SO ARE THEY'. Which...er...is actually tempting! But not perhaps entiiiirely credible. ;)
(no subject) - ladykate63 on September 1st, 2009 10:18 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - ladykate63 on September 1st, 2009 10:19 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - lalumena on September 7th, 2009 01:41 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - ladykate63 on September 7th, 2009 01:47 am (UTC) (Expand)
She was mean and she had seashells in her hair!: rh. gm. smirkdollsome on September 6th, 2009 10:43 pm (UTC)
Oh, man, this is so good! Who knew that White Mage Guy and Resurrected Zombie Marian could be so much fun even without the humourous sacrificial goat?? Seriously, though, you have put such a wonderfully creepy anguished spin on this, and I know I should be feeling worse for Marian than Guy, but God, he just Cannot Do Anything Right! His desperation here is so classic Guy and so heartwrenching. I am eager to see more, homegirl. :D
with a dreamy far-off look: [m] morganalalumena on September 7th, 2009 01:45 am (UTC)
Maybe the goat will appear, who can say? Braying in the background somewhere. Mercifully spared from sacrificial purposes. ;)

Thank you so much! Man, I know that Guy is Not The Best Bloke ever, but he has such good intentions? Mostly? I dunno, I just have a soft spot! I think it's something to do with writing a character. Somehow it makes you fond of them.