This section is from the book "Stories From The Thousand And One Nights", by Edward William Lane and Stanley Lanepoole. Also available from Amazon: Stories From Thousand And One Nights: The Arabian Nights' Entertainments.
All that day 'Ali Baba and his wife were seen going between Kasim's and their own house, and nobody was surprised in the evening to hear the lamentable shrieks and cries of Kasim's wife and Marjaneh, who gave out everywhere that her master was dead. The next morning, at daybreak, Marjaneh went to an old cobbler whom she knew to be always early at his stall, and bidding him good-morrow, put a piece of gold into his hand, saying: "Baba Mustafa, you must bring with you your sewing tackle, and come with me; but I must tell you, I shall blindfold you when you come to such a place".
Baba Mustafa seemed to hesitate a little at these words. "Oh! oh!" replied he, "you would have me do something against my conscience or against my honour?" "God forbid !" said Marjaneh, putting another piece of gold into his hand, "that I should ask anything that is contrary to your honour! only come along with me and fear nothing".
Baba Mustafa went with Marjaneh, who, after she had bound his eyes with a handkerchief at the place she had mentioned, conveyed him to her deceased master's house, and never uncovered his eyes till he had entered the room where she had put the corpse together. "Baba Mustafa," said she, "you must make haste and sew the parts of this body together; and when you have done, I will give you another piece of gold".
After Baba Mustafa had finished his task, she blindfolded him again, gave him the third piece of gold as she had promised, and recommending secrecy to him, carried him back to the place where she first bound his eyes, pulled off the bandage, and let him go home, but watched him that he returned towards his stall, till he was quite out of sight, for fear he should have the curiosity to return and follow her. She then went home, and, on her return, warmed some water to wash the body, and at the same time 'Ali Baba perfumed it with incense, and wrapped it in the grave-clothes with the accustomed ceremonies. Not long after, they brought the bier, and the Imam and the other ministers of the mosque arrived. Four neighbours carried the corpse to the burying-ground, following the Imam, who recited the prayers. 'Ali Baba came after, and Marjaneh followed in the procession, weeping, beating her breast, and tearing her hair. Kasim's wife stayed at home mourning, uttering lamentable cries with the women of the neighbourhood, who came, according to custom, during the funeral, and, joining their lamentations with hers, filled the quarter far and near with sounds of grief. Three or four days after the funeral, 'Ali Baba removed his few goods openly to his sister-in-law's house, in which • he would in future live; but the money he had taken from the robbers he conveyed thither by night. As for Kasim's shop, he intrusted it entirely to the management of his eldest son.
While these things were being done, the forty robbers again visited their retreat in the forest. Great, then, was their surprise to find Kasim's body taken away, with some of their bags of gold. "We are certainly discovered," said the captain. "The removal of the body, and the loss of some of the money, plainly shews that the man whom we killed had an accomplice; and for our own lives' sake we must try and find him. What say you, my sons ?"
All the robbers unanimously approved of the captain's proposal.
"Well," said the captain, "one of you, the boldest and most skilful among you, must go into the town, disguised as a traveller and a stranger, to try if he can hear any talk of the man whom we have killed, and endeavour to find out who he was, and where he lived. This is a matter of the first importance, and for fear of any treachery, I propose that whoever undertakes this business without success, even though the failure arises only from an error of judgment, shall suffer death".
Without waiting for the sentiments of his companions, one of the robbers started up, and said: "I submit to this condition, and deem it an honour to expose my life to serve the troop," He then disguised himself and went into the town just at daybreak, and walked up and down, till accidentally he came to Baba Mustafa's stall, which was always open before any of the shops. Baba Mustafa was seated with an awl in his hand, just going to work. The robber gave him good-morrow, and perceiving that he was old, said: "O Uncle, you begin to work very early. Is it possible that one of your age can see so well ? I question, even if it were somewhat lighter, whether you could see to stitch".
"You do not know me," replied Baba Mustafa; "for old as I am, I have extraordinary good eyes; and you will not doubt it when I tell you that I sewed the body of a dead man together in a place where I had not so much light as I have now".
"A dead body!" exclaimed the robber, with affected amazement. "Yes, yes," answered Baba Mustafa, "I see you want to have me speak out, but you shall know no more".
The robber felt sure that he had discovered what he sought. He pulled out a piece of gold, and putting it into Baba Mustafa's hand, said to him: "I do not want to learn your secret, though you might safely trust me with it. The only thing I desire of you is to shew me the house where you stitched up the dead body".
"If I were disposed to do you that favour," replied Baba Mustafa, "I could not. I was taken to a certain place, whence I was led blindfold to the house, and afterwards brought back again in the same manner; it is therefore impossible for me again to do what you wish.,, " Perhaps," said the robber, " you may remember a little of the way that you were led blindfold. Come, let me blind your eyes at the same place. We will walk together; perhaps you may recognize some part; and as everybody ought to be paid for their trouble, there is another piece of gold for you; gratify me in what I ask you." So saying, he put another piece of gold into his hand.
"I cannot promise," said Baba Mustafa, "that I can remember the way exactly; but since you wish it, I will try what I can do." At these words he arose, to the great joy of the robber, and led him to the place where Marjaneh had bound his eyes. "It was here," said Baba Mustafa, "I was blindfolded; and I turned this way." The robber tied his handkerchief over his eyes, and walked by him till he stopped at Kasim's house, where 'AH Baba then lived. The thief, before he pulled off the band, marked the door with a piece of chalk which he had ready in his hand, and then asked him if he knew whose house that was; to which Baba Mustafa replied, that as he did not live in that neighbourhood, he could not tell. The robber thanked him for the trouble he had taken, and left him to go back to his stall, while he returned to the forest A little after the robber and Baba Mustafa had parted, Marjaneh went out of 'Ali Baba's house upon an errand, and upon her return, seeing the mark the robber had made, stopped to observe it "What can be the meaning of this mark?" she said to herself; "somebody intends my master no good; however, with whatever intention it was done, it is advisable to guard against the worst." Accordingly, she fetched a piece of chalk, and marked two or three doors on each side, in the same manner, without saying a word to her master or mistress.