Author’s Mature Content Note: “Guy’s Rose” is a sweeping romantic love story set amidst the intrigues of the 12th century English court and British politics. As such there will be some passages in this story involving heartfelt love scenes (R rated) and some passages involving intrigue and some violence. I will label the maturity rating of those chapters accordingly. Otherwise, the general rating for this story is PG or PG-13 due to mature situations and topics. If you are unable or unwilling to attend a movie with the ratings that I provide, then please do not read those chapters. This is my disclaimer.
“Guy’s Rose” Ch. 1: A June Summer Monday Brings a Fortuitous Encounter for Lady Roseanna (PG-13)
Getting up at the crack of dawn has always been Lady Roseanna’s secret for escaping her cousin Prince John’s clutches. And this Monday morning in early June is no different. Prince John had hinted to her as they sat in church together yesterday that a stranger was coming into their midst that she should take notice of. Lady Roseanna assumes that Prince John has yet another suitor for her hand and she is determined to steer clear of him. So, she splashes some water on her face in her palace apartments, dresses in her breeches and tunic, twists her hair up under her cap out of sight and heads to the stables for an early morning ride. Lady Roseanna doesn’t eschew the comforts of being a lady and extended member of the royal family--so she still has a servant and a nice cozy bed to sleep in at night. But she relishes the freedom that being a boy and a commoner gives her. However, upon reaching her favorite stallion Wildfire, she finds that there is a lot of commotion with some new arrivals as she talks with one of her young stable boy friends.
Lady Roseanna/Oxbridge: “Tanner, god’s teeth! What a commotion! You would think King Richard had returned from the Holy Land.” [(1) Oxbridge, right top]
Tanner: A strapping boy of 15, he says “Ox, It’s the noble from Nottingham that has been called before Prince John to explain why there is no tribute money.” Tanner says knowingly, because if spies are everywhere, then the palace servants are among the best informed. [(2) Tanner, right 2nd]
Lady Roseanna/Oxbridge: “Well, where is this noble? Another odiferous old fart who smells worse than his horse, I imagine.” She says rather loudly as she looks around.
Sir Guy: Shaking off the detaining hands of his captors, Sir Guy says to Lady Roseanna/Oxbridge turned away from him, “Hold your tongue stable boy! I am Sir Guy of Gisborne to you and you will give me the proper respect. I am summoned before Prince John on an urgent matter of State.” Sir Guy says self importantly, spinning the reason why he is there. [(3) Sir Guy, right 3rd]
Tanner: “Of course, Sir Guy. Beggin your pardon, MiLord. We meant no disrespect.” Tanner pats Oxbridge’s shoulder, trying to get him to go along and not get them both into trouble. Tanner doesn’t want a whipping today.
Lady Roseanna/Oxbridge: “Speak for yourself, Tanner.” She says whirling around to see what this noble looks like and she is temporarily speechless. For before her stands the most beautiful man she has ever seen. He is tall and commanding with long dark brown haired curls tickling his strong neck, large hands with long tapered fingers that could hold a sword or a wine goblet with ease, and a face with handsome patrician features if he would only smile--despite him needing a bath from his long journey and his haughty manners.
Sir Guy: “What are you staring at boy?” Sir Guy says to Roseanna/Oxbridge. “Cat got your tongue? Humbled in the presence of nobility, I would imagine.” Sir Guy says smugly and gives Ox and Tanner his characteristic smirk. [(4) Sir Guy, right bottom]
Lady Roseanna/Oxbridge: Finding her wits and her voice, she says with an air of studied humility tinged with sarcasm as she bows overly effusively to Sir Guy, “Beggin your pardon Milord. But, I haven’t seen a sight such as yours in some time. Aye, not even Prince John stomps around the palace grounds as you do here--and this is his home.” She says flashing fire in her eyes at him. She doesn’t say that Prince John ‘owns’ the palace, because it belongs to her cousin King Richard.
Sir Guy: Frowning and narrowing his eyes, he asks accusatorially, “Are you mocking me, boy?”
Tanner: “No, Milord! Ox and me had better get back to our chores or there will be hell to pay.” Tanner tugs on Oxbridge’s arm and leads him/her away as Sir Guy watches them with a curious expression on his face.
Sir Guy: Muttering under his breath about Oxbridge/Lady Roseanna, “That cheeky boy has a touch of the soft life to him with his clean tunic and breeches and smooth face. Well, that must be due to the easy living here.”
Then the Captain of the Guards leads Guy away to bathe and dress before his audience with Prince John.
To be continued with Chapter 3
Ch. 2 References
(1 right top) “Portrait of a Boy” by Eugene de Blaas, image representing Lady Roseanna disguised as Oxbridge the Valet
(2 right 2nd) “Peasant Boy Putting on Bast Sandals” by Alexey Venetsianov, image representing Tanner the Stable Boy
(3 right 3rd) Sir Guy of Gisborne proud as portrayed by Richard Armitage in the BBC’s Robin Hood, Series 3 episode 5 picture 108
(4 right bottom) Sir Guy of Gisborne perturbed as portrayed by Richard Armitage in the BBC’s Robin Hood, Series 3 episode 5 picture 62
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"Guy's Rose" (Book 1), by Gratiana Lovelace, 2012Fanfiction
Sir Guy has been hauled from Nottingham by Prince John's soldiers after Sherrif Vasey blames him for the lack of sufficient tribute monies collected from the nobles to line Prince John's cofferes. Sir Guy thinks that he is a dead man once he reache...