Robin of Loxley is a Nottingham lord who lives happily with Marian. He then gets drafted to the Third Crusade against Saracens by the corrupt Sheriff of Nottingham. Robin is disillusioned after four years of being away from England. His commander Guy of Gisbourne executes a prisoner, a teenager boy. Despite the pleas of his father Gisbourne decides to send Robin home. Robin returns home to Nottingham and learns through Friar Tuck from an old friend that Robin was declared dead by the Sheriff two years before. This is in order for Robin to take Robin's wealth and land to fund the war effort. The corrupt Cardinal then kicks the residents out of the city to the nearby coal mine. Robin investigates the 'Slags' and witnesses commoners plotting to revolt against the oppressive and exploitative government. He also learns that Marian has become involved in the aspirant leader of the group, Will Tillman. Robin cannot get in touch with the Arab, whose child he attempted to rescue. He introduces himself to Robin as Yahya, which can be translated into "John", and suggests that they work together to stop the war. Robin is to steal the money from the people in order to pay for the church's war. Marian asks Robin to help her when he tells her he's alive. However, Robin chooses to keep his secrets for Marian's protection.