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King John

ACT V SCENE VI An open place in the neighbourhood of Swinstead Abbey. 
 Enter the BASTARD and HUBERT, severally. 
HUBERT Who's there? speak, ho! speak quickly, or I shoot. 
BASTARD A friend. What art thou? 
HUBERT Of the part of England. 
BASTARD Whither dost thou go? 5
HUBERT What's that to thee? why may not I demand 
 Of thine affairs, as well as thou of mine? 
BASTARD Hubert, I think? 
HUBERT Thou hast a perfect thought: 
 I will upon all hazards well believe 10
 Thou art my friend, that know'st my tongue so well. 
 Who art thou? 
BASTARD Who thou wilt: and if thou please, 
 Thou mayst befriend me so much as to think 
 I come one way of the Plantagenets. 15
HUBERT Unkind remembrance! thou and eyeless night 
 Have done me shame: brave soldier, pardon me, 
 That any accent breaking from thy tongue 
 Should 'scape the true acquaintance of mine ear. 
BASTARD Come, come; sans compliment, what news abroad? 20
HUBERT Why, here walk I in the black brow of night, 
 To find you out. 
BASTARD Brief, then; and what's the news? 
HUBERT O, my sweet sir, news fitting to the night, 
 Black, fearful, comfortless and horrible. 25
BASTARD Show me the very wound of this ill news: 
 I am no woman, I'll not swoon at it. 
HUBERT The king, I fear, is poison'd by a monk: 
 I left him almost speechless; and broke out 
 To acquaint you with this evil, that you might 30
 The better arm you to the sudden time, 
 Than if you had at leisure known of this. 
BASTARD How did he take it? who did taste to him? 
HUBERT A monk, I tell you; a resolved villain, 
 Whose bowels suddenly burst out: the king 35
 Yet speaks and peradventure may recover. 
BASTARD Who didst thou leave to tend his majesty? 
HUBERT Why, know you not? the lords are all come back, 
 And brought Prince Henry in their company; 
 At whose request the king hath pardon'd them, 40
 And they are all about his majesty. 
BASTARD Withhold thine indignation, mighty heaven, 
 And tempt us not to bear above our power! 
 I'll tell tree, Hubert, half my power this night, 
 Passing these flats, are taken by the tide; 45
 These Lincoln Washes have devoured them; 
 Myself, well mounted, hardly have escaped. 
 Away before: conduct me to the king; 
 I doubt he will be dead or ere I come. 

Next: King John, Act 5, Scene 7


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