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How Sir Percivale saw many men of arms bearing a dead
knight, and how he fought against them.

WHEN the king thus had made his prayers he heard a voice
that said:  Heard be thy prayers, for thou shalt not die till
he have kissed thee.  And when that knight shall come
the clearness of your eyes shall come again, and thou shalt
see openly, and thy wounds shall be healed, and erst shall
they never close.  And this befell of King Evelake, and
this same king hath lived this three hundred winters this
holy life, and men say the knight is in the court that shall
heal him.  Sir, said the good man, I pray you tell me what
knight that ye be, and if ye be of King Arthur's court and
of the Table Round.  Yea forsooth, said he, and my name
is Sir Percivale de Galis.  And when the good man understood
his name he made great joy of him.

And then Sir Percivale departed and rode till the hour
of noon.  And he met in a valley about a twenty men of
arms, which bare in a bier a knight deadly slain.  And
when they saw Sir Percivale they asked him of whence he
was.  And he answered:  Of the court of King Arthur.
Then they cried all at once:  Slay him.  Then Sir Percivale
smote the first to the earth and his horse upon him.  And
then seven of the knights smote upon his shield all at once,
and the remnant slew his horse so that he fell to the earth.
So had they slain him or taken him had not the good knight,
Sir Galahad, with the red arms come there by adventure
into those parts.  And when he saw all those knights upon
one knight he cried:  Save me that knight's life.  And then
he dressed him toward the twenty men of arms as fast as
his horse might drive, with his spear in the rest, and smote
the foremost horse and man to the earth.  And when his
spear was broken he set his hand to his sword, and smote
on the right hand and on the left hand that it was marvel
to see, and at every stroke he smote one down or put him
to a rebuke, so that they would fight no more but fled to
a thick forest, and Sir Galahad followed them.

And when Sir Percivale saw him chase them so, he
made great sorrow that his horse was away.  And then
he wist well it was Sir Galahad.  And then he cried aloud:
Ah fair knight, abide and suffer me to do thankings unto
thee, for much have ye done for me.  But ever Sir Galahad
rode so fast that at the last he passed out of his sight.  And
as fast as Sir Percivale might he went after him on foot,
crying.  And then he met with a yeoman riding upon an
hackney, the which led in his hand a great steed blacker
than any bear.  Ah, fair friend, said Sir Percivale, as ever
I may do for you, and to be your true knight in the first
place ye will require me, that ye will lend me that black
steed, that I might overtake a knight the which rideth
afore me.  Sir knight, said the yeoman, I pray you hold
me excused of that, for that I may not do.  For wit ye
well, the horse is such a man's horse, that an I lent it you
or any man, that he would slay me.  Alas, said Sir Percivale,
I had never so great sorrow as I have had for losing of
yonder knight.  Sir, said the yeoman, I am right heavy
for you, for a good horse would beseem you well; but I
dare not deliver you this horse but if ye would take him
from me.  That will I not do, said Sir Percivale.  And so
they departed; and Sir Percivale set him down under a tree,
and made sorrow out of measure.  And as he was there,
there came a knight riding on the horse that the yeoman
led, and he was clean armed.