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The Book Of Sir Balin Le Savage - V

( Originally Published Early 1900's )

THEN he looked by him, and was ware of a damsel that came riding as fast as her horse might gallop upon a fair palfrey. And when she espied that Sir Lanceor was slain, then she made sorrow out of measure, and said, "O Balin ! two bodies hast thou slain and one heart, and two hearts in one body, and two souls thou hast lost." And therewith she took the sword from her love that lay dead, and as she took it she fell to the ground in a swoon ; and when she arose, she made great dole out of measure, which sorrow grieved Balin passing sore, and went to her for to have taken the sword out of her hands, but she held it so fast, that in nowise he might take the sword out of her hands ; but if he should have hurt her, and suddenly she set the pommel of the sword to the ground, and ran herself through the body. And when Balin saw her dead, he was passing heavy in his heart, and ashamed that so fair a damsel had destroyed her-self for the great love she had unto Sir Lanceor. "Alas !" said Balin, "me repenteth sore the death of this knight, for the love of this damsel; for there was much true love between them both," and for sorrow he might no longer behold them, but turned his horse and looked toward a forest, and there he espied the arms of his brother Balan ; and when they were met, they put off their helms and kissed together, and wept for joy and pity. "Then," said Balan, "I weened little to have met with you at this sudden adventure ; I am right glad of your deliverance out of your dolorous prisoning, for a man told me in the Castle of Fourstones that ye were delivered, and that man had seen you in King Arthur's court ; and therefore I came hither into this country, for here I supposed to find you." And anon Balin told unto his brother of all his adventures of the sword, and of the death of the Lady of the Lake, and how King Arthur was displeased with him; "wherefore he sent this knight after me that lieth here dead, and the death of this damsel grieveth me full sore." "So cloth it me," said Balan ; "but ye must take the adventure that God will ordain unto you." "Truly," said Balin, "I am right heavy of mind that my lord, King Arthur, is displeased with me, for he is the most worshipfullest knight that reigneth now on the earth, and his love I will get, or else I will put my life in adventure; for King Rience, of North Wales, lieth at a siege at the castle Terabil, and thither will we draw in all haste, to prove our worship and prowess upon him." "I will well," said Balan, "that we do so, and we will help each other as brethren ought to do."

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