Bill Simpson was on his yearly tour of Merry Ole England. Bill was still a salesman by trade, rarely was he ever needed in the field. He just liked to really stick it to these snotty Britts. Regardless of thier attitudes these peoples' money was as green to him as any. He had insisted that his personel car was flown over. After all, he was Bill Simpson and he was a very fat man who could not hope to fit into any other car. The ancient caddilac cruised over the dirt road. So this is Sherwood Forrest, he thought. It was a very majestic piece of land, wasn't it here that an outlaw...
Damn. Now the fat man had to get out to investigate.
Front right tire, flat. 'whats this' he saw a wooden shaft protuding from the side of the tire. The seams in his expensive white suit groaned in protest as the fat man bent over to remove the arrow.
A dirty boot kicked him right in the ass. Bill squeeled like a pig and fell forward. He struggled to turn his mass arould quickly.
What he saw when he turned around was a really tall man with wild blond hair and a beard. The stranger was wearing rags and and held a crude long bow.
"Who in the hell do you think..."
"Give me your gold and any food you have, if you wish to pass" He sounded American, but what would a tourist be doing out here.
"Do you know who your talking to, buddy." He somehow manuvered his porcine face into a glare.
The dirty boot lashed out again this time striking Bill in the hip. The fat man actually skidded across the dirt shoulder.
He said nothing only clenched his teeth and dug into his pockets, pulling out various bills and coins.
The big blond guy took the money.
"Food." he demanded.
"In the car. Just leave me alone. I'm just a tourist."
The savage looking man got into the backseat and found food. With his arms full he approached Bill, who had managed to get up on one knee. His courage had returned "Well, you got what you wanted, now scram!" he shouted.
THe dirty woodsman pulled his foot back one more time.
Bill flinched turning his eyes to the ground. A moment passed nothing happened. And another. He finally looked up, the big green guy was gone.
A cell phone call and about an hour later Bill was in town. He burst though the Sheriff's door and told him his story. The Sheriff laughed.
"You're not the first to see this 'man of the forest' maybe the first American though." the Sheriff finished under his breath. The sheriff sat back down in his very modern desk, too compliment his very modern office. "I guess you do fit the description of his previous attacks. Rich. gluttonous. "Yes, well if you want my opinion, I think its all just a hoax. Maybe something just to bring attention back to this forgotten area. "
"A hoax, well all I see is robbery and assault!" The fat man brushed off his white jacket.
"I can take your statement but that is all I can for you right now, Mr...," the Sheriff of Nothinghamshire offered.
"Simpson. You'll be hearing from me, sir." The fat man stormed out, slamming the door behind him. He got in the cadillac and headed straight for the embassy.
The 'man of the forrest' or the Green Man had first found himself in the forrest a few months ago. He didn't know who he was or how he had got there. He only felt very wild as if he were just another creature of the woods. In time he had stolen cloths from the neihboring towns and had fashioned a bow from an elm staff. In order to hunt. He lived savagely like this for a time.
One day, out hunting he happened apon an old sign. It read 'Entering Sherwood Forrest, beware animals and thiefs.' He did not know how he could read it but he could. Upon reading this it opened a gate in his mind. He knew of robbery, swashbuckling, gold, royality, maidens and all of the grandeur. He knew what it was to be a man, so he stood like one. He spoke and sung to himself as he worked. He had much work to do. The forrest was his again.
As more people were exposed to "the man of the forrest' though attacks or just sightings, word spread. The press quickly became invovled sensationalizing the events. Some people claimed this was the ghost of Robin Hood returned to destroy the corrupt local government. Smaller circles related this 'green man' as a carnation of the horned god of their pagan traditions.
Back in America, on the west coast, at the nothern californian monistary, Conner Hawke sat deep in meditation, thought kept attacking his concentration. He first thought about his mother, the growing distance, she was concidering moving to Boston. Maybe it would be good for her, though. He thought about his girlfriend or the lack of. Also, he thought about his father whom Conner still knew was out there somewhere. There he hadnt focused on these interuptions to long, he simplily noticed them and let them drift away.
Footsteps in the hall, the door burst open he already knew it was Eddie Fryers. He intruded, not knocking. Eddie was more hyper than he had been for a while. The middle age man had been contepating himself as of late, moving toward the peaceful way.
"Conner! Remember when you asked to make some connections with people that might be able to find your dad? After you had that 'vision' of the future and a tribe of green arrows."
"Sure," Conner replied.
"Well a friend just called, with news of a tall blond figure haunting Sherwood Forrest in England. You know where Robin hood used to..."He reconsidered "Maybe it may be farfetched but its the first thing since we found that guy that used to be Warlord in africa."
"True it is. Ive always wanted to go to England. We'll have to ask Brother Jenkins also. Thanks Eddie. Can you make travel arrangements."
"On my way." Eddie was all business, back to his original way.
The fat man had made waves. The officials at the embassy knew this man had influence back home. Some sort of teamster clowns. To avoid political pressure on them they would have to do something.
The Ambassitor made a call.
The tall man was not alone in the woods. He walked with a motley band of merry men, but he wondered where was his Maid Merian. Had she forsaken him in these dark days of Richards bleak oppresion?
Five men clad in black carring fully automatic weapons gathered at the opening of the forrest. The sheriff had hand picked this five man swat team for a very special purpose. To erradicate the cause of all the recent political pressure on him. The Sheriff had no hopes of holding his office if he didn't keep certain people in his favor.
The vigilantes set out though the wood land to the center of most of the disturbances. Right about where the savage had attacked the armored bank truck, an arrow struck right at the team leader's feet. The bandit was above them. He muttered something incoherent, rambling gibberish.
Guns let loose, bullets tore though live wood and leaves gently floated to the forrest floor. A second spray splintered the area the outlaw had occupied.
Of course by this time, the green man had changed postions.
One, two, three arrows came from behind the swat team. The first tore right above the gunmans elbow, through his hand and into the hand guards of the automatic weapon. The second jammed inside of a trigger housing. The third severed a nerve in the mans hand, he dropped his piece. By the time the other two whirled around, the assailant had again disappeared. Not before he sent another arrow out, grazing one armed mans neck. This one instantly blacked out. The last man standing glanced at his fallen brethen. All old military buddies.
A tap at his shoulder. "Tell your Sheriff that it will take much more than a handful of the kings men to take what is ours." Pow. lights out.
Conner and Eddie arrived in Nottinghamshire in the mid-afternoon. Time for tea. It was a cozy little village that had not seemed to have changed much in centuries. That was one thing about the English culture, its traditions had been tested in time, Conner thought.
Eddie was not packing. At first it struck Conner as very odd but then he reconsidered maybe this was just the next step in Eddie Fryer's path.
These two men rented a car and drove into the forrest. News clipping had detailed locations, giving them an idea of where to look. Conner was prepared to be disappointed here. He knew that finding his father would be a long ardeous task, yet he had to know.
He suddenly began to rethink this, after his father dropped from the trees, crazed looking aiming a rough looking bow right at them. The arrow took flight. Conner and eddie ducked and rolled out of the still moving car, right as the windshield shattered. The big blond man moved almost impercepatably. Another arrow covered Queens former friends. "Haven't you soldiers heard word that these sacred forrest are forbidden to the likes of you."
Eddie was first on his feet. "You crazy bastard dont you reconize us!" He took trecherous steps forward.
The 'man of the woods' eyes were glazed. He lived in a different world.
The noble outlaw released his charge and sent the crony to St. Peter.
Eddie took the arrow only in the shoulder after some instinctive battle skill dominated him. He soaked the fall leaves crimson.
Conner charged the madman and with the strength of a lunatic the green man tossed him into a tree trunk. When Conner regained his composure his father was gone and his good friend lay wounded.
The sheriff's men reported back after their defeat. The Sheriff simply paid them and sent them away. The calm engishman knew that ghosts did not mutilate people. Now he knew what had to be done to restore equilibrum. This would take a few favors. He picked up the tele.
Conner did not know what to think. Eddie was fine. The wound was treated there in Nottinghamshire. Eddie returned back to the monestary. His pride may have been a little bruised but he took the whole incident pretty well. He only complained that he was getting old and now he had a new ache in the morning. Eddie would return to the life of conteplation and peace.
Conner Hawke was no where near ready to return home right now. Instead, after seeing Eddie home he flew on up to Seatle. That mans actions were strange but there was little doubt that the face, the posture were all his fathers. Conner knew of only one person whom could help him now.
He knocked on the studio door of one Dianna Lance, florist, former costumed hero, former better half of Oliver Queen. Conner had never actually met the woman before but he felt he knew her as much as his father had told him about her, during the brief amout of time the two had spent together.
She anserwed the door looking sleepy and dressed for such activties, not to mentioned puzzled at this strange young man at her door a three in the morning. Cripes, Conner had not even considered the time until now. Oh well, to late now. "Maam, my name is Conner Hawke, son of Oliver Queen." Conner wore his Green Arrow outfit under his long coat, just incase. He was glad he did as it added emphasis the situation. "May I come in, I have something to tell you."
After a not-so-brief brief Dianna made her intrest known "When does the next flight leave?" Conner smiled.
The Sheriff cursed. The media had somehow gotten word of his plans. It was so hard to find reliable contacts now days. Loose lips sink ships. The news vans and camera crews would soon gather where he had planned the mass effort to flush the green man out of the woods. Bulldozers, controlled fires, a platoon of armed soilders, dogs all would soon mount to begin there attacks. The Sheriffs main concern was how to turn this around to make himself look good though the media.
It was a long and apprehensive flight. At least Conner could take this time to get to know the woman whom had meant so much to his father. They arrived in Notingham shire to find little town infested with media. They swarmed though the street growing in concetration towards the forrest.
This presented a challege in getting in. Dianna got into her travel back anbd changed into tennis shoes. "Ready for a hike?"
They penetrated the woods, into the dense pine, knowing that a full onslaught would unleash soon.
The organized force became a mob quickly, people of all size, age and social background had came out to the forrest for the show. The Sheriff, himself had arrived early hoping he could get in a few interviews with the press. This could even mean a promotion for him, he figured. He was waiting to the perfect dramatic moment to order the hunt. He knew no-one could survive this crazed circus long.
Conner and Dianna came upon a clearing. They could hear one man singing an old celtic ballad at a short distance. Dianna knew then that this out of key voice was Ollie's. The voice stopped thier prescences was known. The savage green man jumped from out of nowhere into the middle of the clearing. "Merrian, is that you, love?" His shattered mind struggled.
The blank, wild eyes darted to Conner. "Ahh! and this is your captor!" he poised to attack. "Stop!" Dianna screamed. She could hear dogs barking, the onslaught was coming. "Listen, Ollie you know who we are. It is the twentith century and you are here now, alive, somehow. Try to concetrate!" Doom was almost upon them.
In an instant, in his eyes they could see it, he remembered. A blink of reconigtion, and then his knees gave out. They were there to catch him. They moved stealthly out of the woods.
Hours later, away in the London sweet they had rented Oliver Queen came to. Conner and Dianna were there beside the bed, with the same question forming on thier lips.
"I'll be fine. I'm among family again. Everthing will be fine." He said weakly but with a slight smile.