Wednesday June 26th, 2013

The exercise:

Write something that has to do with: Robin Hood.

The inspiration for that is not particularly straightforward, nor is it very interesting, so I'll spare you all and just keep it to myself.

Just before I left this morning to go out to the garden we got an email from the restaurant we supply, putting in a pretty decent order. Six pounds of cherries (eh), six pounds of arugula (happy to get that out of the garden before it all bolted), and twenty heads of kohlrabi (very glad to harvest that before they get too big).

Hopefully, with tourist season about to kick into high gear around here, this will mark the start of bigger, more consistent orders from them.

Mine:

The moment the covered wagon drew into the courtyard I knew what had happened. The multiple arrows protruding from the stretched canvas, the downtrodden driver and guard, the way the horses stepped nervously.

I took a deep breath and moved to meet them.

"Welcome to -"

"There must have been twenty of them!" the driver cried out, the fear still gripping his throat making his words difficult to understand.

"Twenty?" the guard gave his companion a disgusted look before turning to face me. "Fifty, at least. Maybe even a hundred."

"Ambushed in the forest?" I asked the question only as a formality. The man never launched an attack elsewhere.

"With all those trees and bushes there might have been two hundred of 'em! We didn't stand a chance!"

It was possible, I suppose, that there had actually been that many. Unlikely, but possible. In the end, though, it wouldn't matter how many men Robin Hood had brought with him. Prince... King John would take out his anger and frustration on the poor sods who had allowed his gold to be stolen away from him.

2 Comments:

Greg Bennett said...

That's a good scene, definitely the starter for something, I think. If I knew what I'd continue it :) I like how the number of men in the ambush steadily gets larger as the ambushees work out what kind of figure the listener will accept as plausible. And King John definitely was the sort to shoot the messenger!

Robin Hood
Someone, somewhere, had clearly been smoking Mayor Rob Ford's crack pipe when they came up with the idea of slum renovation in the sleepy town of Sixticton. The residents had looked at one another when they heard about it (it was easy enough, they were all eating in the town's restaurant at the time) and shrugged; clearly this was another pork-barrel project for someone. So it was rather a surprise when the government shipped in two-hundred impoverished immigrants in order to create a slum that could then be cleaned up.
The slum took root with alarming speed creating a no-go area a little to the south of Sixticton. It was centred around the road to Yoga Farm, where regular deliveries of produce came from.
And so it was that one sunny afternoon, when the hill behind Sixticton was on fire (again), the Yoga Farm truck came to a halt because standing in the road was a skinny thug wearing a green hoodie and holding a loaded catapult. The driver of the truck leaned out of his window and honked the horn.
"Yo dawg!" said the thug, his drawl as affected as his pose. "Yo, you can't honk me! I'm Robbin' Hood."
"Robbing whose hood?" asked the driver. He scratched his chin, the three-day stubble was itchy.
"No dawg, like, I'm Robbin' Hood. The English dude with the 'tude."
"You're in the road," said the driver, with the tone of voice and patience people reserve for small children and the incurable slow.
"Yeah, 'cause this is like stand and deliver, ya know?"
"Adam and the Ants?" The driver was old enough to remember them but would deny it in polite company.
"Naw dawg! English dude, stole from the rich and gave to his mother!"
"I think you're a bit confused," said the driver carefully. The catapult appeared to be stone-loaded and he didn't want his windshield chipped. Or the arugula in the truck to overheat and wilt to the point of unsaleability. "You can't just stand in the middle of the road. You have to leap out at people. Want to try it again?"
"Sure dawg," said the thug, a bright smile lighting up his pock-marked face. He scurried off to the side of the road, and the driver pressed down on the gas pedal, marvelling at the cupidity of the young and wondering when the slum renovation project was going to get going.

Marc said...

Greg - thanks!

Very fun scene. I quite enjoyed all of the little references you slipped in there.

(And I'll have you know that I finally shaved again today, so I'm remarkably stubble free at the moment)

(Yes, I know it won't last)