I then asked Coiac to return our clothes and books. “What,” said he, “did you not bring them to Sartach?” I said that I had certainly brought them to Sartach, but had not given them, and put him in mind of what I had said on that former occasion. To this he answered “You say truth, and none can resist the truth. I left your goods with my father, who dwells in Saray, a new town, which Baatu has built on the eastern shore of the Volga, but our priests have some of your vestments.” “If any thing please you,” said I, “keep it, so that you restore my books.” I requested letters from him to his father to restore my things; but he was in haste to be gone, and said that we should alight at the train of the ladies, which was near at hand, and he should send me Sartachs answer. Though I was fearful he might deceive me, yet I dared not to contend with him. Late in the evening his messenger came with two coats, seemingly all of silk, saying that Sartach had sent me these, one for myself, and that I might present the other to my king on his behalf. I answered, that I wore no such garments, but should present both to my king, in honour of his lord; and I now send both by the bearer of these letters. He delivered me also a letter for the father of Coiac, to restore all that belonged to me.
We returned to the court of Baatu on the same day on which I had departed thence the year before, being the second day after the invention of the Holy Cross, 16th September 1254; and I found our young men in health, though much afflicted with poverty. Gosset told me, they had perished for want, if the king of Armenia had not comforted them, and recommended them to Sartach, for the Tartars believed I was dead, and even asked them if they could keep oxen and milk mares; for if I had not returned, they had certainly been reduced to servitude. After this Baatu called me before him, and made the letters which Mangu-khan sends you to be interpreted to me. He likewise demanded what way I would go, whether by sea or land? I said the sea would be frozen, as whiter was approaching, and I must, therefore, go by land; and believing your majesty was still in Syria, I directed my journey to Persia, for if I had known you were in France, I would have gone through Hungary. We had to travel a month with Baatu before we could obtain a guide. At length they appointed a Jugur, who understanding I would give him nothing, and that I wished to go by Armenia, caused our letters to be made for conducting me to the soldan of Turkey, hoping he might there receive gifts. We left the moving court of Baatu fifteen days before All Saints, 16th October, and went direct southwards for Sarai, always keeping near the Volga, and there the Volga divides into three branches or arms, each almost twice as large as the branch of the Nile at Damieta. Besides these, it divides into four lesser arms, so that we had to pass seven branches of the river in boats: Upon the middle branch, is a village called Sumerkant, without