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Of the treason of King Mark, and how Sir Gaheris
smote him down and Andred his cousin.

THEN there came Sir Kay, the Seneschal, unto King Mark, and there
he had good cheer showing outward.  Now, fair lords, said he,
will ye prove any adventure in the forest of Morris, in the which
I know well is as hard an adventure as I know any.  Sir, said Sir
Kay, I will prove it.  And Sir Gaheris said he would be avised
for King Mark was ever full of treason: and therewithal Sir
Gaheris departed and rode his way.  And by the same way that Sir
Kay should ride he laid him down to rest, charging his squire to
wait upon Sir Kay;  And warn me when he cometh.  So within a
while Sir Kay came riding that way, and then Sir Gaheris took his
horse and met him, and said:  Sir Kay, ye are not wise to ride at
the request of King Mark, for he dealeth all with treason.  Then
said Sir Kay:  I require you let us prove this adventure.  I
shall not fail you, said Sir Gaheris.  And so they rode that time
till a lake that was that time called the <423>Perilous Lake, and
there they abode under the shaw of the wood.

The meanwhile King Mark within the castle of Tintagil avoided all
his barons, and all other save such as were privy with him were
avoided out of his chamber.  And then he let call his nephew Sir
Andred, and bade arm him and horse him lightly; and by that time
it was midnight.  And so King Mark was armed in black, horse and
all; and so at a privy postern they two issued out with their
varlets with them, and rode till they came to that lake.  Then
Sir Kay espied them first, and gat his spear, and proffered to
joust.  And King Mark rode against him, and smote each other full
hard, for the moon shone as the bright day.  And there at that
jousts Sir Kay's horse fell down, for his horse was not so big as
the king's horse, and Sir Kay's horse bruised him full sore. 
Then Sir Gaheris was wroth that Sir Kay had a fall.  Then he
cried:  Knight, sit thou fast in thy saddle, for I will revenge
my fellow.  Then King Mark was afeard of Sir Gaheris, and so with
evil will King Mark rode against him, and Sir Gaheris gave him
such a stroke that he fell down.  So then forthwithal Sir Gaheris
ran unto Sir Andred and smote him from his horse quite, that his
helm smote in the earth, and nigh had broken his neck.  And
therewithal Sir Gaheris alighted, and gat up Sir Kay.  And then
they yode both on foot to them, and bade them yield them, and
tell their names outher they should die.  Then with great pain
Sir Andred spake first, and said:  It is King Mark of Cornwall,
therefore be ye ware what ye do, and I am Sir Andred, his cousin. 
Fie on you both, said Sir Gaheris, for a false traitor, and false
treason hast thou wrought and he both, under the feigned cheer
that ye made us! it were pity, said Sir Gaheris, that thou
shouldst live any longer.  Save my life, said King Mark, and I
will make amends; and consider that I am a king anointed.  It
were the more shame, said Sir Gaheris, to save thy life; thou art
a king anointed with cream, and therefore thou shouldst hold with
all men of worship; and therefore thou art worthy to die.  With
that he lashed at <424>King Mark without saying any more, and
covered him with his shield and defended him as he might.  And
then Sir Kay lashed at Sir Andred, and therewithal King Mark
yielded him unto Sir Gaheris.  And then he kneeled adown, and
made his oath upon the cross of the sword, that never while he
lived he would be against errant-knights.  And also he sware to
be good friend unto Sir Tristram if ever he came into Cornwall.

By then Sir Andred was on the earth, and Sir Kay would have slain
him.  Let be, said Sir Gaheris, slay him not I pray you.  It were
pity, said Sir Kay, that he should live any longer, for this is
nigh cousin unto Sir Tristram, and ever he hath been a traitor
unto him, and by him he was exiled out of Cornwall, and therefore
I will slay him, said Sir Kay.  Ye shall not, said Sir Gaheris;
sithen I have given the king his life, I pray you give him his
life.  And therewithal Sir Kay let him go.  And so Sir Kay and
Sir Gaheris rode their way unto Dinas, the Seneschal, for because
they heard say that he loved well Sir Tristram.  So they reposed
them there, and soon after they rode unto the realm of Logris. 
And so within a little while they met with Sir Launcelot that
always had Dame Bragwaine with him, to that intent he weened to
have met the sooner with Sir Tristram; and Sir Launcelot asked
what tidings in Cornwall, and whether they heard of Sir Tristram
or not.  Sir Kay and Sir Gaheris answered and said, that they
heard not of him.  Then they told Sir Launcelot word by word of
their adventure.  Then Sir Launcelot smiled and said:  Hard it is
to take out of the flesh that is bred in the bone; and so made
them merry together.