فصل 05

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کتاب های خیلی ساده

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فصل 05

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CHAPTER FIVE

And so the years passed. Sir Lancelot and the queen continued their love affair. Many knights suspected what was happening. Very few of them, however, discussed the scandal openly. They were afraid of Sir Lancelot and they did not want to wound Arthur.

One evening Sir Gawain and his brothers were talking together in a corner of the great hall. Sir Agravaine suddenly began to talk loudly about the affair.

‘I’m ashamed of us all,’ he said. ‘We all know what is happening between Sir Lancelot and the queen. It’s a disgrace to the Round Table!’

‘You’re right,’ agreed Sir Mordred eagerly. ‘We should do something about it for the king’s honour.’

‘What do you care about the king’s honour?’ Sir Gawain asked Sir Mordred angrily. ‘You just want to cause trouble!’

‘I’m going to speak to the king,’ Sir Agravaine announced. ‘I’m going to tell him everything.’

Sir Gawain looked at his brothers sadly. He loved the Round Table and he was very loyal to Arthur.

‘If you speak to the king,’ he warned Sir Agravaine, ‘you’ll destroy the whole Round Table.’

‘I agree,’ said Sir Gaheris. ‘You mustn’t do it.’

Sir Gareth looked angrily at his brothers, Sir Agravaine and Sir Mordred. He rose to his feet and walked away. Sir Gaheris and Sir Gawain also rose and followed him.

Arthur had heard the angry voices and the noisy argument. He walked over to Sir Agravaine and Sir Mordred.

‘What was all that shouting about?’ he asked.

‘We were discussing Sir Lancelot and the queen,’ replied Sir Agravaine.

King Arthur sighed deeply. He knew what was coming. He had been told years before by Merlin that Queen Guinevere would betray him. He loved Guinevere and Sir Lancelot was his favourite knight of the Round Table.

‘People have talked about Sir Lancelot and the queen before,’ he said warningly. ‘But you know how good a knight Sir Lancelot is. He would kill anyone who made such an accusation.’

‘I have a plan,’ Sir Agravaine said. ‘You are going hunting tomorrow morning,’ he reminded Arthur. ‘I want you to stay out all day and then send a message to the queen that you will sleep away from the castle. Sir Lancelot is certain to go to the queen’s room tomorrow night if he thinks you are not in the castle. I’ll be waiting for him with Sir Mordred and twelve other knights. We’ll catch them together!’

‘Very well,’ agreed King Arthur, ‘I’ll stay away from the castle tomorrow night, as you suggest.’

The next morning the king went hunting. He sent a message to Guinevere in the afternoon, telling her that he would not return to the castle that night.

As evening fell, Sir Lancelot told Sir Bors that the queen had sent for him.

‘Don’t go!’ Sir Bors said quickly.

Sir Lancelot looked at his friend in surprise.

‘What do you mean?’ he asked coldly. ‘I told you the queen has sent for me. Do you expect me to disobey her?’

‘Be careful,’ Sir Bors warned. ‘Sir Agravaine has been watching you recently. Please be careful!’

Sir Lancelot walked to the queen’s room. He took a sword with him, but he was not wearing any armour. He knocked on the door and entered silently. After a few minutes footsteps could be heard in the corridor outside the queen’s room. Sir Agravaine banged heavily on the door.

‘Come out, traitor knight!’ he cried loudly. ‘Come out from the queen’s room, Sir Lancelot.’

Guinevere looked desperately a ‘What shall we do?’ she cried.

‘If they catch you in here they’ll kill you. And they’ll burn me at the stake!’

Sir Lancelot picked up his sword.

‘Listen to me,’ he said to the queen. ‘They may kill me, but my friends here at the court will save you from the stake. You won’t burn because of me. Sir Bors will protect you, my lady.’

The banging on the door continued.

‘Come out, Sir Lancelot!’ cried Sir Agravaine.

‘Come out, traitor knight,’ shouted Sir Mordred.

Sir Lancelot opened the door of the room just wide enough for one knight to enter. A figure in full armour rushed in and attacked Sir Lancelot. Sir Lancelot struck the knight a great blow on the head with his sword and the man fell to the ground dead.

Then Sir Lancelot closed the door. He stood over the knight’s body and began to remove his armour.

‘Help me,’ he whispered to the queen. She came to his side and helped him to put on the heavy armour.

Sir Lancelot strode to the door and flung it wide open. Sir Agravaine, Sir Mordred and the remaining eleven knights attacked him fiercely. Sir Lancelot struck them down one by one, until only Sir Mordred was left alive. He was wounded and he suddenly fled.

Sir Lancelot went back into the queen’s room.

‘This is the end of everything for us,’ he told her sadly. ‘The king will be my enemy from now on. I’ve killed thirteen knights of the Round Table.’

‘You must go while you can,’ Guinevere told him. ‘It’s not safe for you here.’

‘You’re in danger, too,’ Sir Lancelot said. ‘Why don’t we escape together?’

‘No,’ the queen replied. ‘I shall stay here at the court. If they try to burn me at the stake, I’m sure you’ll come to save me.’

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