What happened during their further Journey towards the Inn

They all dismounted at the spring, and by this time Cardenio had
dressed himself in the boy’s clothes that Dorothea had worn, which,
though by no means good, were better than those he cast off. The Curate
had brought some scanty provisions from the Inn, and they sat down near
the spring to satisfy, as well as they could, the hunger they all felt.

Whilst they took their ease, a young lad passed by, who looked very
earnestly at all those who sat round the spring, and after a moment ran
up to Don Quixote, and embracing his legs, burst into tears, crying:
‘Ah, my Lord, do not you know me? Look well upon me. I am the boy
Andrew whom you unloosed from the oak-tree to which I was tied.’

Don Quixote knew him at once, and, taking him by the hand, turned to
those who were present and said: ‘That you may see how important it
is to have Knights Errant in the world to set right the wrongs and
injuries which are done by insolent and wicked men, you must know that
a few days ago, as I rode through a wood, I heard piteous screams and
cries as of some person in sore distress. I hastened instantly to the
place, and there I found tied to an oak this boy whom you see here,
and I am glad that he is here, because if I shall not say the truth,
he may check me. He was tied to an oak-tree, stark naked from the
waist upward, and a certain clown, whom I afterwards learned to be his
master, was beating him with a horse’s bridle. As soon as I saw him I
asked the master the reason of his cruelty. The Farmer replied that he
was beating him because he was his servant, and that he had been guilty
of carelessness due rather to knavery than stupidity. At which the
lad said, “Sir, he beats me only because I ask him for my wages.” The
Farmer answered with many excuses, which I heard but did not believe. I
made him at once untie the boy, and forced him to swear me an oath that
he would take him home with him and pay him every _real_ upon the nail.
Is not all this true, son Andrew? Answer, nor hesitate in anything.
Tell these gentlemen what passed, that they may learn how necessary it
is to have Knights Errant up and down the highways.’

‘All that your Worship says is very true,’ replied the lad;’ but the
end of the business was very contrary to what you imagine.’

‘How contrary?’ asked Don Quixote. ‘Did not the clown pay thee, then?’

‘He not only did not pay me,’ answered the boy, ‘but as soon as you
had passed out of the wood, and we were alone again, he tied me to
the same tree and gave me afresh so many blows that I had like to be
flayed alive. And at each blow he uttered some jest to make a mock of
your Lordship, and if I had not felt so much pain, I could have found
it in my heart to have laughed very merrily. In fact, he left me in
such a wretched plight that I have been in hospital ever since. And
you are at fault in all this, for if you had ridden on your way, and
not come meddling in other folk’s affairs, perhaps my master would
have contented himself with giving me a dozen blows or so, and would
presently have let me loose and paid me my wages. But, because you
abused him so harshly, his anger was aroused, and as he could not
revenge himself on you, as soon as he was alone he let loose the storm
of his wrath upon me, in such a manner that I fear I shall never be a
man again as long as I live.’

‘The mischief was,’ said Don Quixote, ‘in my going away, for I should
not have departed until I had seen thee paid. For I might well have
known that no churl will keep his word if he finds that it does not
suit him to keep it. But yet, Andrew, thou dost remember how I swore
that if he paid thee not, I would return and seek him out, and find
him though he should hide himself in the belly of a whale.’

‘That is true,’ replied Andrew, ‘but it is all of no use.’

‘Thou shalt see whether it is of use or no presently,’ said Don
Quixote, and so saying he got up hastily and commanded Sancho to bridle
Rozinante, who was feeding whilst they did eat.

Dorothea asked him what it was he meant to do. He answered that he
meant to go in search of the Farmer and punish him for his bad conduct,
and make him pay Andrew to the last farthing, in spite of all the
churls in the world. To which she answered, entreating him to remember
that he could not deal with any other adventure, according to his
promise, until he had finished hers; and as he knew this better than
any one else, he must restrain his anger until he returned from her
Kingdom.

‘That is true,’ answered Don Quixote; ‘and Andrew must have patience
until my return, for I once more vow and promise anew never to rest
until he be satisfied and paid.’

‘I do not believe these vows,’ said Andrew; ‘I would rather just now
have as much money as would help me on my way to Seville than all the
revenge in the world. Give me something to eat, and let me go, and may
all Knights Errant be as erring to themselves as they have been with
me.’

Sancho took out of his bag a piece of bread and cheese, and, giving it
to the lad, said: ‘Take it, brother Andrew, for each of us has a share
in your misfortune.’

‘What share have you in it?’ asked Andrew.

‘This piece of bread and cheese which I give thee,’ said Sancho, ‘for
no one knows whether I shall have need of it again or not. For you must
know, my friend, that we Squires to Knights Errant suffer great hunger
and ill-luck, and many things which are better felt than told.’

Andrew laid hold of his bread and cheese, and, seeing that no one gave
him anything else, bowed his head and went on his way. And as he went
he turned to Don Quixote and said: ‘I pray you, Sir Knight Errant, if
you meet me again, although you should see me being cut to pieces, do
not come to my aid, but leave me to my ill fate. For it cannot be so
great but that greater will result from your help, and may you and all
the Knights Errant that ever were born in the world keep your paths
away from mine.’

Don Quixote started up to chastise him, but he set off running so fast
that no one tried to pursue him. The Knight was greatly ashamed at
Andrew’s story, and the others had much ado not to laugh outright, and
so put him to utter confusion.

When they had finished their dinner, they saddled and went to horse
once more, and travelled all that day and the next without any
adventure of note, until they arrived at the Inn, which was the dread
and terror of Sancho Panza, and though he would rather not have entered
it, yet he could not avoid doing so. The Innkeeper, the Hostess,
her daughter, and Maritornes, seeing Don Quixote and Sancho return,
went out to meet them with tokens of great love and joy. The Knight
returned their compliments with grave courtesy, and bade them prepare a
better bed than they gave him the last time.

‘Sir,’ said the Hostess, ‘if you would pay us better than the last
time, we would give you one fit for a Prince.’

Don Quixote answered that he would, and they prepared a reasonable good
bed for him in the same room where he lay before. Then he went off to
bed at once, because he was tired and weary, both in body and mind.

He had scarcely locked himself in, when the Hostess ran at the Barber,
seizing him by the beard, and cried: ‘By my troth, but my tail shall no
longer be used for a beard, for the comb which used to be kept in the
tail gets tossed about the floor, and it is a shame.’

But the Barber would not give it up for all her tugging, until the
Curate told him to let her have it, for there was no longer any need
of a disguise, as the Barber might now appear in his own shape, and
tell Don Quixote that after he had been robbed by the galley slaves he
had fled for refuge to that Inn. As for the Princess’s Squire, if the
Knight should ask after him, they could say he had been sent on before
to her Kingdom, to announce to her subjects that she was returning,
bringing with her one who should give them all their freedom. On this
the Barber gave up the tail to the landlady, together with the other
things they had borrowed.

All the people of the Inn were struck with Dorothea’s beauty and the
comeliness of the shepherd Cardenio. The Curate made them get ready a
dinner of the best the Inn could produce, and the Innkeeper, in hope
of better payment, prepared them very speedily a good dinner. All this
was done whilst Don Quixote slept, and they agreed not to wake him, for
they thought it would do him more good to sleep than to eat.