"I have a love for you, Gaston, and I would not bring your house into ill repute, nor do such scath to these walls and chattels as must befall if two such men as this Englishman and I fall to work here." "Nay, think not of me!" cried the inn-keeper. "What are my walls when set against the honor of Francois Poursuivant d'Amour Pelligny, champion of the Bishop of Montaubon. My horse, Andre!"
He sat perched on a high bay horse, and held on to the bridle of a spirited black palfrey, the hides of both glistening from a long run. "I have sought you everywhere, dear Lady Maude," said he in a piping voice, springing down from his horse and holding the stirrup. "Troubadour galloped as far as Holmhill ere I could catch him. I trust that you have had no hurt or scath?"
"Your bearing and your words, Don Martin, are such I should have looked for in you," he remarked. "You will tell the king, your master, that he hath been paid his price and that if he holds to his promise he hath my word for it that no scath shall come to his people, nor to their houses or gear.
He is in MY domain: therein shall he receive no scath! And verily, there are many evil beasts about me." With those words Zarathustra turned around to depart. Then said the soothsayer: "O Zarathustra, thou art a rogue! I know it well: thou wouldst fain be rid of me! Rather wouldst thou run into the forest and lay snares for evil beasts! But what good will it do thee?
My second sister, my brother's wife, and her two children, they were but ash-heaps in the smoking ruins of their house. I will not say that we have not wrought great scath upon France, but women and children have been safe from us.
"See yonder," he added, pointing to a bombard which lay within the camp: "there is what hath done scath to good bowmanship, with its filthy soot and foolish roaring mouth. I wonder that a true knight, like our prince, should carry such a scurvy thing in his train. Robin, thou red-headed lurden, how oft must I tell thee not to shoot straight with a quarter-wind blowing across the mark?"
But they who never from the right have strayed Who as the citizen the stranger aid They and their cities flourish: genial peace Dwells in their borders, and their youth increase; Nor Jove, whose radiant eyes behold afar, Hangs forth in heaven the signs of grievous war; Nor scath, nor famine; on the righteous prey Peace crowns the night, and plenty cheers the day.
"How is a man to take aim with these fool's toys, and how can he hope to do scath with them?" "I will show you," answered Sir Nigel; "for here is the great box of powder, and if you will raise it for me, John, I will show you how it may be used. Come hither, where the folk are thickest round the fire.
Yet I will promise you that on our way we shall find time to pass Freshwater and to prevail upon these rovers to leave you in peace." "We are much beholden to you!" cried the mayor "But I cannot see, my lord, how, without a war-ship, you may venture against these men. With your archers, however, you might well hold the town and do them great scath if they attempt to land."
"I trust that you have taken no hurt, my fair lady," said Alleyne, conducting her to the bank, upon which John had already placed a cushion. "Nay, I have had no scath, though I have lost my silver tweezers. Now, lack-a-day! did God ever put breath into such a fool as Michael Easover of Romsey? But I am much beholden to you, gentle sirs. Soldiers ye are, as one may readily see.