Ninety years old lives in Novgorod Buslay. He does not argue with anyone and does not quarrel with anyone: neither with Novgorod, nor with Pskov, nor with Moscow. When Buslai dies, his son Vasily remains. When Vasily turns seven, he begins to walk around the city, go to the prince’s court and “joke” with other children: “Whom pulls by the hand – a hand off, which for the leg – the leg off.”
Mother Vasily, Mamelfa Timofeevna, many complain about the behavior of her son, and she does not allow Vasily to walk around Novgorod. When a young man turns seventeen, he makes himself a war harness and sets a feast. At this feast Basil chooses a squad – thirty guys without a single one.
Then Vasily Buslaev feasts with the Novgorod princes.
Mamelfa Timofeevna, learning about this, takes his son from the prince’s feast and puts him in deep cellars. And on the Volkhov Bridge, the Novgorod peasants are converging with Vasilyeva’s squad. They start the fight. The odds are on the side of the Novgorod muzhiks.
The Mamelfa Timofeevna, a young girl, goes out to the Volkhov with iron rockers. She sees that the squad of Basil is defeated. The girl grabs the rocker and begins to beat them with the Novgorodians.
And then the girl-black-haired runs to the cellar and tells Vasily that his squad is in trouble. Vasily asks the girl to unlock the door. When she releases Vasily Buslaev, he grabs the carts axis, goes to the Volkhov Bridge and kills this axis a lot of people. Novgorod muzhiks are very few, but the battle continues.
Novgorod princes go to Mamelfa Timofeevna and ask her to take her son away. Mother herself is afraid of Basil. She advises us to turn to Starchshchu Piligrimishchu, the cross father of Vasily Buslaev. He lives in the Sergius Monastery. The princes go there, begging the Pilgrim’s Starchishche to come to the Volkhov Bridge and persuade Vasily to stop the massacre. The old man, having heeded their requests, comes and tries to calm Vasili, but he kills him with an iron axis.
Vasily drops the axis. He praises his mother for coming in from behind – otherwise she would be unhappy. Now Vasily Buslaev stops the battle.
Novgorod princes fall to Vasily’s feet, invite him to visit him and ask him to clean the bodies of the dead. Vasily orders to remove the corpses. He goes home – to heal his brave squad.
Vasily Buslaev prayed to travel
Vasily Buslaev asks for blessings from his mother, Mamelfa Timofeevna, to go to Jerusalem, to take the donation. Mother warns Basil that the road to Jerusalem is dangerous, and says that you can save your soul here. But Basil asks blessings for the second and third time, says that he wants to kiss the Lord’s tomb, and in the end declares that he will go without a blessing. Then the mother blesses him to go.
Vasily equips the ship, takes with himself his brave squad. When they swim up to the Sorochin mountain, Vasili sees a cross on its top. He orders the ship to stop to pray to the cross. But when Vasily Buslaev climbs a mountain, there is no cross there. Vasili finds only a human skull and kicks him with his foot. The skull says that he was also a hero before, and predicts: Vasily Buslaev will not return home, but will be buried next to him. But Vaska does not believe in this.
The ship sails to Jerusalem. Well done are applied to the Lord’s tomb, make a contribution – forty thousand. Then Vasily goes to the Jordan River and bathes in it with his naked body. An old woman passes by. She tells Basil that you can not swim naked here, and predicts to him that he will not return home. But Vaska just spits in her direction, not believing these words.
With his retinue, Vasily goes on the return journey. Again they drive up to the Sorochin mountain, and again on its summit Vasili sees a cross. The whole squadron rises to the mountain. But they do not find the cross, but see the “ser-combustible stone”. Vaska offers friends fun: to jump across the stone, forward and backward. And then – along the stone. Vasily Buslaev falls and breaks. Before his death, he asked the squad to put the skull lying on this mountain with him in the coffin. The druzhina fulfills his will. Above the grave put a cross, and on it make an inscription about the two heroes lying here. As a sign of sorrow, the squad removes all the decorations from the ship.
In Novgorod, the mother of Vasily Buslaev, Mamelfa Timofeevna, is waiting for her son. She looks in the telescope and sees a ship on which there are no more ornaments. Mother cries: she understands that there is no master on the ship either.
Mamelfa Timofeevna goes to the church to serve a requiem for Vasily Buslaev.