فصل 11

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کتاب های خیلی ساده

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فصل 11

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CHAPTER ELEVEN

The battle between the two armies lasted all day and many knights were killed or badly wounded. King Arthur rode around the battlefield all day, looking for the treacherous Sir Mordred. As evening fell the king looked about and saw that there were just two knights standing beside him. The rest were dead or wounded. Suddenly he saw Sir Mordred a short distance from him. Sir Mordred was standing alone, because all of his army had been destroyed.

‘Give me my spear,’ the king ordered the knights who were standing beside him. ‘I can see Sir Mordred, the traitor, over there and I’m going to kill him.’

‘Remember what Sir Gawain told you in your dream, Sir,’ one of the knights reminded him. ‘He told you that you would die if you fought against Sir Mordred today. Please come away from the battlefield. You can fight him another day.’

But King Arthur was too angry to listen.

‘I don’t care whether I live or die,’ he said, ‘so long as that traitor who has destroyed all my knights dies today!’

The king seized his spear and ran towards Sir Mordred. He raised his sword high in the air and plunged it into Sir Mordred’s side. Sir Mordred staggered, recovered himself for a moment and brought his sword down onto the king’s head. Then the traitor fell to the ground dead. King Arthur groaned and slid to the ground too. His two knights rushed to his side. There was blood flowing from the wound to his head.

‘Help me! Take me away from here,’ King Arthur ordered them. ‘I can’t stand up.’

The two knights lifted the king gently to his feet, but the effort was too great for one of them. His own wounds were very serious and he dropped the king and fell to the ground.

‘Now there are just two of us,’ King Arthur said sadly to the remaining knight. ‘Help me, Sir Bedivere.’

Sir Bedivere carried the king towards the lake and laid him down on the ground.

‘Take Excalibur, my sword, and throw it into the water’, the king commanded him.

Sir Bedivere took the king’s sword and walked to the edge of the lake. He did not want to throw the precious sword into the water where it would be lost forever, so he hid it under a tree and returned to the king.

‘What did you see when you threw the sword into the water?’ asked the king.

‘I saw nothing but the wind and the waves,’ replied Sir Bedivere.

‘You’re not telling me the truth,’ King Arthur told him. ‘Go and throw the sword into the lake as I told you to.’

Sir Bedivere went back to the lake and picked up Excalibur. Once again, however, he was reluctant to throw it into the water. He hid it for the second time and then returned to the king.

‘What did you see when you threw Excalibur into the water?’ King Arthur asked him again.

‘I saw nothing but the wind and the waves, my lord,’ replied Sir Bedivere again.

Now King Arthur was angry.

‘Are you a traitor, too?’ he cried weakly. ‘Go again and do what I have commanded. You’ve already delayed too long and I may die as a result.’

Sir Bedivere went to the place where he had hidden Excalibur. He took hold of the sword and threw it as far as he could into the water. He watched as the sword flew through the air and then he saw an arm come out of the water and catch it. Sir Bedivere ran excitedly back to the king.

‘What did you see when you threw Excalibur into the water?’ King Arthur asked him again.

‘I saw an arm come out of the water and catch the sword,’ Sir Bedivere told him.

‘Carry me to the water’s edge,’ the king said.

Sir Bedivere lifted the king onto his back and carried him to the edge of the lake. They saw a boat coming towards them across the water. Inside the boat there were several ladies and a queen.

‘Now put me into the boat,’ commanded the king.

Sir Bedivere lifted the king into the boat and the ladies made him as comfortable as they could. The boat moved away from the edge of the lake.

Sir Bedivere was heartbroken when he saw the king taken away from him. He was the last knight of the Round Table and he was alone in the world.

‘What about me?’ he cried in desperation. ‘What shall I do, my lord?’

‘You must do as best you can,’ he heard the king’s voice tell him. ‘I am going into the vale of Avalon to be cured of this terrible wound. But if you hear no more about me, then pray for me, Sir Bedivere.’

Sir Bedivere walked away from the lake into the forest. He walked all night and in the morning he came to a hermitage. He went into the chapel and there he saw the hermit praying in front of a new tomb.

Sir Bedivere was full of dread when he saw the tomb.

‘Whose tomb is that?’ he asked the hermit.

The hermit rose to his feet.

‘I don’t know who is buried here,’ he answered, ‘but I can guess. At midnight last night some ladies came here with the body of a man. They offered me money to bury him and a large sum of money to say prayers for his soul.’

‘It’s the king!’ cried Sir Bedivere in despair.

Some people, however, do not believe that King Arthur died of his wounds. They think he was taken to the vale of Avalon and was successfully cured of his injuries there. Other people say that he died, but that the words written on his tomb promised that he would return: Hic jacet Arthurus, Rex quondam, Rexque futurus.

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