"James, where is my money? And what the hell are you doing in my Barn? I told you to sleep in the extra room downstairs, whenever you came back from your gambling spree." Said Bellamy the old farmer. Bellamy took James in when he was younger. When James ran away from his parents, he found the farmer on the edge of the village.
"What?" He answered in a raspy voice, which he always got when he first woke up. Especially when he had a hangover.
"The money. The Barn. Oh get up!" Bellamy shouted obviously annoyed.
"Huh?" He sounded like he was hearing his own voice for the first time.
"You must have gotten drunk last night." He said as he leaned over James.
"What?" He said again, but added a hint of a mocking tone.
"You, have no idea how much I wish you could see my face, I can't even to stand to look at you right now."
"You know what, I wish I could see your face too. But guess what, I'm blind!"
"Yeah, that Witch knew you deserved it. You still owe me a lot of money. You owe the bartender more for how many drinks you took." He added with a chuckle.
"I know, I know. Everything will be fine, I will pay you back sometime-"
"When? When are you going to pay me back? When are you going to pay all the people you steal from back? It's just a never ending list of people that you still have to pay back. I am never going to get my money, am I? After all these years I thought that I would rub off on you, that you, would be..." He paused taking a deep breath in before answering, looking off to the side. Glancing everywhere but at the blind boy that sat in front of him, with dirt covering his clothes. "Different."
"Well, I don't really have a job so it's hard for me to pay people back."
"Then get a job!" This time Bellamy stared straight at him, putting all the rage he could into the look, hoping, that James could feel it.
"You know with my record nobody would hire me. Stop giving me that look....Everyone knows me here."
"And who's fault is that? Because it's definitely not mine. But it might be yours, think about that for once." Bellamy shouted as he stomped out of the barn and slammed the door behind him leaving the blind boy in the dark.
"Well thanks for the welcome back speech!" James remarked sarcastically.
James got up out of his haystack he called a bed. He brushed the twigs that he could feel were poking him through his faded jeans from the haystack. He looked up still only seeing darkness, but everything was dark for James. He wanted to see again. Most of all he wanted to see his Rapunzel. Her golden hair flowing in the breeze. To him, it always smelled like lilacs. It brought up painful memories, thinking about her. That she could be dead and he was actually looking for a corpse.
When James went blind, his parents asked what happened to him. He told them a Witch cast a curse of thorns into his eyes. Of course his parents didn't believe him about a silly story with a Witch. It was just a child's imagination. When he kept telling them over and over every year, they started talking one night about sending him to a mental institution. He knew his parents would never believe him. That night when everyone was sleeping, he felt around and packed any of his belongings that he could find. He left without a trace. He stayed away for months, living in cardboard boxes to hiding in subway cars. He did everything to keep living even though he couldn't see the world he was living in. Soon he reached the age of fifteen and knew that no one was going to come searching. He returned to the small village when he turned sixteen to hear rumors that Rapunzel and the house he once lived in were gone. He went around town asking people what happened to the house. They told him it burned down with two people inside of it. They found charred flesh and bone in the wreckage and cleaned it up and there was nothing left of the house. He soon started to ask about Rapunzel.
A young man about as old as he was with a deep scottish accent started talking to James, "Some people say they started the fire because their son ran away. They became so indulged in grief that they wanted to see their son, if not in this life, then another. Now the Rapunzel girl turned out to be the King and Queens only daughter. She was taken somewhere, nobody has ever found her. They say that maybe she was killed but that's not my belief. I say that Witch named Agatha Gothel took her and hid her for her own safe keeping. You know you look familiar- "
James thanked him in a nervous way before he could finish and ran away as fast as he could being careful not to bump into anything by using his stick to guide him. He ran into a few carts and tripped over something hard but he didn't fall. He apologized and yelled "Pardon me! Excuse me!" Everytime he felt someone or something hit him.
James was a criminal. Instead of getting a good job he stole for everyone and anyone. James was terrified to go to the village if anyone noticed him from the wanted signs. He made his way into the village by bribing people with money. Some people never left the village and never saw the wanted posters in the woods.
He made lots of money and played poker a lot to get double money. He is smart though, he never bet all of his money. Most people think it's hilarious to watch a blind man try to play poker. They antagonize James about losing. They aren't laughing in the end when he wins and takes everything. But James didn't always win every game. When he did, he used it to travel to search for Rapunzel. He never found her and earned quite the reputation when he started stealing. The only person he could trust was the cranky old farmer because the farmer's son drowned in a river when he was four. To the farmer the criminal named James was his second son that he loved as much as his first.
So here James was. Sitting in the old barn that was covered with the smell of rat droppings. This is where his life had brought him. He didn't know what the barn looked like, only that it had a faint odor that James thought might be coming from himself. He felt around to get out of the barn. He found his stick was leaning on the edge of the door of the barn.
Pine is the first thing he smelled when he walked out. Another reason he stayed with the old farmer was because the smells reminded him of home. He would also help out around the farm if he was able. Collecting eggs while the chickens pecked at him because he wasn't very subtle about it.
Tomorrow he would leave again, he had stayed here long enough even though he didn't mind Bellamy or the barn he slept in. He needed to hit the road to keep searching for Rapunzel. He didn't know if she was dead or just locked away.
He was determined to find her, determined to get his sight back, and determined to murder the Witch that stole his Golden Flower.