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Of the preparation of Sir Palomides and the two brethren
that should fight with him.

WELL be ye found, said the knight to Palomides, for
of all knights that be alive, except three, I had liefest
have you.  The first is Sir Launcelot du Lake, and
Sir Tristram de Liones, the third is my nigh cousin,
Sir Lamorak de Galis.  And I am brother unto King
Hermance that is dead, and my name is Sir Hermind.
Ye say well, said Sir Palomides, and ye shall see how I
shall speed; and if I be there slain go ye to my lord Sir
Launcelot, or else to my lord Sir Tristram, and pray them
to revenge my death, for as for Sir Lamorak him shall ye
never see in this world.  Alas, said Sir Hermind, how
may that be?  He is slain, said Sir Palomides, by Sir
Gawaine and his brethren.  So God me help, said Hermind,
there was not one for one that slew him.  That is
truth, said Sir Palomides, for they were four dangerous
knights that slew him, as Sir Gawaine, Sir Agravaine, Sir
Gaheris, and Sir Mordred, but Sir Gareth, the fifth
brother was away, the best knight of them all.  And so
Sir Palomides told Hermind all the manner, and how they
slew Sir Lamorak all only by treason.

So Sir Palomides took his ship, and arrived up at the
Delectable Isle.  And in the meanwhile Sir Hermind that
was the king's brother, he arrived up at the Red City, and
there he told them how there was come a knight of King
Arthur's to avenge King Hermance's death:  And his
name is Sir Palomides, the good knight, that for the
most part he followeth the beast Glatisant.  Then all the
city made great joy, for mickle had they heard of Sir
Palomides, and of his noble prowess.  So let they ordain
a messenger, and sent unto the two brethren, and bade
them to make them ready, for there was a knight come
that would fight with them both.  So the messenger went
unto them where they were at a castle there beside; and
there he told them how there was a knight come of King
Arthur's court to fight with them both at once.  He is
welcome, said they; but tell us, we pray you, if it be Sir
Launcelot or any of his blood?  He is none of that blood,
said the messenger.  Then we care the less, said the two
brethren, for with none of the blood of Sir Launcelot we
keep not to have ado withal.  Wit ye well, said the
messenger, that his name is Sir Palomides, that yet is
unchristened, a noble knight.  Well, said they, an he be
now unchristened he shall never be christened.  So they
appointed to be at the city within two days.

And when Sir Palomides was come to the city they
made passing great joy of him, and then they beheld him,
and saw that he was well made, cleanly and bigly, and
unmaimed of his limbs, and neither too young nor too old.
And so all the people praised him; and though he was
not christened yet he believed in the best manner, and was
full faithful and true of his promise, and well conditioned;
and because he made his avow that he would never be
christened unto the time that he had achieved the beast
Glatisant, the which was a full wonderful beast, and a
great signification; for Merlin prophesied much of that
beast.  And also Sir Palomides avowed never to take full
christendom unto the time that he had done seven battles
within the lists.

So within the third day there came to the city these
two brethren, the one hight Helius, the other hight
Helake, the which were men of great prowess; howbeit
that they were false and full of treason, and but poor men
born, yet were they noble knights of their hands.  And
with them they brought forty knights, to that intent that
they should be big enough for the Red City.  Thus came
the two brethren with great bobaunce and pride, for they
had put the Red City in fear and damage.  Then they
were brought to the lists, and Sir Palomides came into the
place and said thus:  Be ye the two brethren, Helius and
Helake, that slew your king and lord, Sir Hermance, by
felony and treason, for whom that I am come hither to
revenge his death?  Wit thou well, said Sir Helius and
Sir Helake, that we are the same knights that slew King
Hermance; and wit thou well, Sir Palomides Saracen, that
we shall handle thee so or thou depart that thou shalt
wish that thou wert christened.  It may well be, said Sir
Palomides, for yet I would not die or I were christened;
and yet so am I not afeard of you both, but I trust to God
that I shall die a better christian man than any of you
both; and doubt ye not, said Sir Palomides, either ye or I
shall be left dead in this place.