"As you please," said Dunstan, rapping the window-seat again with an air of great unconcern.
He would have liked to spring on Dunstan, wrench the whip from his hand, and flog him to within an inch of his life; and no bodily fear could have deterred him; but he was mastered by another sort of fear, which was fed by feelings stronger even than his resentment.
"Not it," said Dunstan. "I'm always lucky in my weather.
"Make your tender heart easy," said Dunstan, opening the door.
With that, Dunstan slammed the door behind him, and left Godfrey to that bitter rumination on his personal circumstances which was now unbroken from day to day save by the excitement of sporting, drinking, card-playing, or the rarer and less oblivious pleasure of seeing Miss Nancy Lammeter.
He had long known that the delusion was partly due to a trap laid for him by Dunstan, who saw in his brother's degrading marriage the means of gratifying at once his jealous hate and his cupidity.
"Nay, truly," said Little John, "thou seest in me what the holy Saint Dunstan can do for them that serve him upon a handful of parched peas and a trickle of cold water."
Has not this same holy Saint Dunstan taught thee a goodly song or two?"
While they were in sight of those at the inn, the brothers walked their horses soberly, not caring to make ill matters worse by seeming to run away from Little John, for they could not but think how it would sound in folks' ears when they heard how the brethren of Fountain Abbey scampered away from a strolling friar, like the Ugly One, when the blessed Saint Dunstan loosed his nose from the red-hot tongs where he had held it fast; but when they had crossed the crest of the hill and the inn was lost to sight, quoth the fat Brother to the thin Brother, "Brother Ambrose, had we not better mend our pace?"
Get both of you down straightway from off your horses, and we will kneel here in the middle of the crossroads and pray the blessed Saint Dunstan to send us some money to carry us on our journey."
"Now," quoth Little John, "I ha' a great part of a mind to crack thy head for thee for speaking thus of the good Saint Dunstan! But get down straightway, for my patience will not last much longer, and I may forget that ye are both in holy orders." So saying, he twirled his stout staff till it whistled again.
Then Little John began to beseech Saint Dunstan for money, which he did in a great loud voice.