“I will counsel you,” said the hermit, “if ye will insure me that ye will never come in that queen’s fellowship as much as ye may forbear.” And then Sir Launcelot promised the hermit, by his faith, that he would no more come in her company. “Look that your heart and your mouth accord,” said the good man, “and I shall insure you that ye shall have more worship than ever ye had.”
Then the good man enjoined Sir Launcelot such penance as he might do, and he assailed Sir Launcelot and made him abide with him all that day. And Sir Launcelot repented him greatly.
Sir Perceval departed and rode till the hour of noon; and he met in a valley about twenty men of arms. And when they saw Sir Perceval, they asked him whence he was; and he answered: “Of the court of King Arthur.” Then they cried all at once, “Slay him.” But Sir Perceval smote the first to the earth, and his horse upon him. Then seven of the knights smote upon his shield all at once, and the remnant slew his horse, so that he fell to the earth. So had they slain him or taken him, had not the good knight Sir Galahad, with the red cross, come there by adventure. And when he saw all the knights upon one, he cried out, “Save me that knight’s life.” Then he rode toward the twenty men of arms as fast as his horse might drive, with his spear in the rest, and smote the foremost horse and man to the earth. And when his spear was broken, he set his hand to his sword, and smote on the right hand and on the left, that it was marvel to see; and at every stroke he smote down one, or put him to rebuke, so that they would fight no more, but fled to a thick forest, and Sir Galahad followed them. And when Sir Perceval saw him chase them so, he made great sorrow that his horse was slain. And he wist well it was Sir Galahad. Then he cried aloud, “Ah, fair knight, abide, and suffer me to do thanks unto thee; for right well have ye done for me.” But Sir Galahad rode so fast that at last he passed out of his sight. When Sir Perceval saw that he would not turn, he said, “Now am I a very wretch, and most unhappy above all other knights.” So in his sorrow he abode all that day till it was night; and then he was faint, and laid him down and slept till midnight; and then he awaked and saw before him a woman, who said unto him, “Sir Perceval, what dost thou here?” He answered, “I do neither good, nor great ill.” “If thou wilt promise me,” said she, “that thou wilt fulfil my will when I summon thee, I will lend thee my own horse, which shall bear thee whither thou wilt.” Sir Perceval was glad of her proffer, and insured her to fulfil all her desire. “Then abide me here, and I will go fetch you a horse.” And so she soon came again, and brought a horse with her that was inky black. When Perceval beheld that horse he marvelled, it was so great and so well apparelled. And he leapt upon him and took no heed of himself. And he