THE STORY OF ROBIN HOOD 331
pounds to spend on our gardens and our wines,' and he went with the Abbot to attend the court of justice wherein the Knight's lands would be declared forfeited by the High Justiciar.
' If he come not this day,' cried the Abbot, rubbing his hands, ' if he come not this day, they will be ours.'
' He will not come yet,' said the Justiciar, but he knew not that the Knight was already at the outer gate, and Little John with him.
'Welcome, Sir Knight,' said the porter. 'The horse that you ride is the noblest that ever I saw. Let me lead them both to the stable, that they may have food and rest.'
'They shall not pass these gates,' answered the Knight, sternly, and he entered the hall alone, where the monks were sitting at meat, and knelt down and bowed to them.
'I have come back, my lord,' he said to the Abbot, who had just returned from the court. 'I have come back this day as I promised.'
' Have you brought my money ?' was all the Abbot said.
'Not a penny,' answered the Knight, who wished to see how the Abbot would treat him.
' Then what do you here without it ?' cried the Abbot in angry tones.
' I have come to pray you for a longer day,' answered the Knight, meekly.
'The day was fixed and cannot be gainsaid,' replied the Justiciar, but the Knight only begged that he would stand his friend and help him in his strait. ' I am with the Abbot,' was all the Justiciar would answer.
'Good Sir Abbot, be my friend,' prayed the Knight again, ' and give me one chance more to get the money and free my lands. I will serve you day and night till I have four hundred pounds to redeem them.'
But the Abbot only swore a great oath, and vowed