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The Herd Boy and His Hermit, Charlotte M. Yonge CHAPTER XIII. -- FELLOW TRAVELLERS And sickerlie she was of great disport, And full pleasant and amiable of port; Of small hounds had she that she fed With roasted flesh and milk and wastel bread. --CHAUCER. Sir Giles Musgrave of Peelholm was an old campaigner, and when Hal came out beyond the gate of the Threlkeld fortalice, he found him reviewing his troop; a very disorderly collection, as Sir Lancelot pronounced with a sneer, looking out on them, and strongly advising his step-son not to cast in his lot with them, but to wait and see what would befall, and whether the Nevils were in earnest in their desertion of the House of York. Hal restrained himself with difficulty enough to take a courteous leave of his mother’s husband, to whose prudence and forbearance he was really much beholden; though, with his spirit newly raised and burning for his King, it was hard to have patience with neutrality. He found Sir Giles employed in examining his followers, and rigidly sending home all not properly equipped with bow, sheaf of arrows, strong knife or pike, buff coat, head-piece and stout shoes; also a wallet of provisions for three days, or a certain amount of coin. He would have no marauding on the way, and refused to take any mere lawless camp follower, thus disposing of a good many disreputable-looking fellows who had flocked in his wake. Sir Lancelot’s steward seconded him heartily by hunting back his master’s retainers; and there remained only about five-and-twenty--mostly, in fact, yeomen or their sons--men who had been in arms for Queen Margaret and had never made their submission, but lived on unmolested in the hills, really outlawed, but not coming in collision with the authorities enough to have their condition inquired into.


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