What is the sum? asked Robin. Tell me truly. It is four hundred pounds, said the Knight.
And what will you do if you lose your lands? asked Robin again.
Sail away over the sea, said the Knight, and bid farewell to friends and country. There is no better way for me.
As he spoke, tears fell from his eyes, and he turned to depart. Good day, my friend, he said to Robin;
I cannot pay you what I should. But Robin held him fast.
Where are your friends? asked he. Sir, they have all forsaken me since I became poor, and they turn away their heads if we meet upon the road,
though when I was rich they were always in my castle. When Little John and Will Scarlett and the rest heard this,
they wept in anger and sorrow, and Robin told them to fill a cup of the best wine and give it to the Knight.
Have you no one who would be surety for you? said he. None, answered the Knight. You speak bravely, said Robin, and you, Little John,
go to my treasure chest, and bring me four hundred pounds. So Little John went, and Will Scarlett, and they brought back the money.
Sir, said Little John, when Robin had counted it and found it no more and no less, look at his clothes, how thin they are!
You have stores of clothing, green and scarlet, in your chests, no merchant in England has so much.
I will find some to his measure. And this he did. Master, spoke Little John again, there is still something else.
You must give him a horse, that he may go to York as befits a knight. Take the gray horse, said Robin, and put a new saddle on it,
and take also a pair of boots with gilt spurs on them. And as it would not be proper for a knight to ride by himself on this errand,
I will lend you Little John as squire. When shall we meet again? asked the Knight.
On this day twelve months from now, said Robin, under the greenwood tree.