Chapter 3: Judgement

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"You should take her to the Laird..." suggested one voice from the crowd. "What a brilliant idea, Patrick!" shouted Dougal. "Take her with ya then. I can spare you in this business..." continued Dougal and blinked at the sailor, like they were partners in crime. "As you wish," said Patrick softly, made a bow and then looked at Ann, who was standing at the same place. "Come on, girl. Let's go." wave Patrick, but she didn't move. "Go!" shouted Oliver. She fearfully drags her shoulders closer to her head and she began moving slowly, following her new companion. What can I do instead? I would die if I won't follow him... Thought poor Ann. "And don't forget to tie her up! What if she'll try to escape!" she heard from afar.

Not much time has passed, when they found themselves on a not so much wide street. Everywhere were people talking, arguing, laughing... Ann cannot help to smile. I miss my ordinary life. These folks have certainly different problems than me and Elizabeth, but... Tears showed themselves in the corners of her eyes. She began blinking in hope that her tears won't be spotted.
She found that Oliver was talking to someone, so she has more time to observe the place. Beaten dusty street, wooden cottages and mansions, sounds of market's hustle and bustle nearby, all this was unfamiliar to her.

Oliver, her companion turned to her and nodded. "We're going, you little thief." He beckons to the wooden carriage full of straw. "Here. Tie her up. Just to be sure she wouldn't escape, Henry." Oliver passes a piece of a rope to Henry, who was obviously his farm worker.
She surrendered in her thoughts, and she scrambled up to the carriage and sat into the prickled straw.
She let Henry tie her up.
Just a second later, they went off with Oliver, who, in the meantime sat into the coaching box.
The journey was pleasant, the sun was high in the sky and the birds were singing in the fields. Ann remained silent, she was deep in her thoughts...

Maybe it's just a dream. Maybe I can just pinch myself and I'll wake up... Thought Anne. She's done it, but unfortunately, she wasn't successful.
Ok, so. Clearly, I'm in the medieval times in Scotland. I don't know, where to go and what to do. I guess I just need to follow these people because they can keep me alive. Or they can't... And would not want to... She shivered. Suddenly, she had goosebumps all over her body, in spite the shining sun. Don't think this way! Be positive. Just.. Breathe. In, and out. She calmed herself down.

She had to fell asleep because all of a sudden they were on some kind of a county residence.  Dark, stony kind of castle was suddenly before her. Everywhere were people carrying goods in and out. "Come," said Henry, Patrick's helper. "I'll untie you..." said he and handy untied her ropes. "Come with me, girl!" cried Henry. She had to obey his orders, so she climbed down. The older man took her arm and he began to walk so fast, that she was almost running.
There wasn't enough time to take a look around the entire building, all she can see were torchers on the walls, the rest was fashing around her eyes.

They arrived at the great hall - there were some stools and tables and there was an elevated place in the middle. Patrick turned away from her for a minute, asking some servant where's someone called Jamie. "He'll do the justice.." smiled he sourly. She didn't say a word, just waited.
It took some time before all the servants made the way for an elderly, chubby man with a ponytail. Seriously, what do they have with these hair styles? thought Ann. The chubby man came up to his place on an elevated place, probably meant for the noble people. Ann and Patrick stepped before him.
"Jamie, m'Laird..." bowed Patrick, "...Oliver, the sailor found this girl as she was robbing his ship full of fish, m'Laird..." said Patrick quietly, almost fearfully. She was quiet. "Is this true?" turned Jamie to her with a question. "No, m'lord." she shooked her head. "Lies!" cried her travel friend. "Calm down, Patrick!" cried Jamie. "I'm sorry, m'Laird..." whispered he and bent his head.
Everyone in the hall was silent, Ann didn't know that they have to participate in those trials as a warning.
"Now, this must be punished." said lord calmly, but in a cold way. Ann made a pitiful face, although she know she's done nothing. "You'll be jailed for a rest of the week. Then I decide what to with you next." decided he with the powerful voice. She began to cry. "No... No, my lord, I'm telling the truth!" cried Ann. "Stop crying, you whore!" Patrick cried at her. "You won't help yourself, stupid girl!" added then.

Ann was taken to the dungeons where she's going to spend the first night...


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