Internet Shakespeare Editions

Author: William Shakespeare
Editor: Michael Best
Not Peer Reviewed

King John (Modern)


[5.6]

2550
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.
2555Bastard
Whither dost thou go?
Hubert
What's that to thee?
Why may not I demand of thine affairs
As well as thou of mine?
Bastard
Hubert, I think.
2560Hubert Thou hast a perfect thought.
I will upon all hazards well believe
Thou art my friend that know'st my tongue so well.
Who art thou?
Bastard
Who thou wilt: An if thou please
2565Thou mayest befriend me so much as to think
I come one way of the Plantagenets.
Hubert Unkind remembrance! Thou, and endless night
Have done me shame. Brave soldier, pardon me,
That any accent breaking from thy tongue,
2570Should scape the true acquaintance of mine ear.
Bastard Come, come, sans compliment. What news abroad?
Hubert Why here walk I in the black brow of night
To find you out.
2575Bastard
Brief then: and what's the news?
Hubert O my sweet sir, news fitting to the night,
Black, fearful, comfortless, and horrible.
Bastard Show me the very wound of this ill news.
I am no woman, I'll not swoon at it.
2580Hubert The King, I fear, is poisoned by a monk.
I left him almost speechless and broke out
To acquaint you with this evil, that you might
The better arm you to the sudden time
Than if you had at leisure known of this.
2585Bastard 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
Yet speaks and peradventure may recover.
Bastard Who didst thou leave to tend his majesty?
2590Hubert Why, know you not? The lords are all come back
And brought Prince Henry in their company,
At whose request the king hath pardoned them,
And they are all about his Majesty.
2595Bastard Withhold thine indignation, mighty heaven,
And tempt us not to bear above our power!
I'll tell thee, Hubert, half my power this night,
Passing these flats, are taken by the tide.
These Lincoln Washes have devourèd them,
2600My self, well mounted, hardly have escaped.
Away before! Conduct me to the king.
I doubt he will be dead or ere I come.
Exeunt.