Write your own Malory!

Contribute to the Matter of Britain! Roll two six-sided dice on the following table 2d6 times. Then interpolate those elements, in the order you rolled them, into your own story! If you get the same result twice, just repeat yourself!

11 Merlin shows up with his gold marker and writes down a prophecy unrelated to the current story.

12 Someone accuses Sir Launcelot of sleeping with Guenever; he issues blanket denials.

13 Arthur ignores a blatant clue about the Launcelot-Guenever affair.

14 Launcelot beats a knight jousting and sends him to go visit Guenever.

15 Peter the dwarf acts as a teleporting messenger/courier.

16 A knight goes crazy and lives in the woods for a while.

21 A knight takes up a pseudonym for no clear reason.

22 Gawaine whines and reminds everyone that King Arthur is his uncle.

23 Launcelot takes a nap. Optional: he is discovered by a woman who knows him.

24 Someone holds a gigantic jousting tournament.

25 Pitiless Bruce attacks, then runs away.

26 A knight announces an intention to go on a strange adventure.

31 A damosel appears, with a strange adventure all set up, just needing a knight to participate.

32 Nimue has to clean up someone else’s mess.

33 Some jerk knights standing by the side of the road challenge passersby to jousts.

34 Gawaine, Mordred, Agravaine, and/or Gaheris hold a grudge.

35 Tristram returns to Cornwall in triumph.

36 Tristram is exiled from Cornwall, never to return.

41 Tristram insults a friend and alienates them such that they pretend not to recognize him the next time they see him.

42 Palomides cries.

43 A female character features heavily for chapters and chapters without ever receiving a name.

44 King Arthur regretfully announces that Guenever shall be burned at the stake.

45 The Holy Grail appears to a knight in a mystic vision or else someone just carries it into the room under a velvet coverlet.

46 Morgan le Fay makes a halfhearted attempt to ruin Arthur’s life.

51 Sir Carados aka King Carados aka the King of Carados appears. Optional: he’s immediately killed off. (If you roll this more than once, he should die the first time he shows up but not the second.)

52 The story peters out with no resolution, and a new, equally random one begins.

53 The immediately preceding plot point is negated in a staggering continuity error.

54 A woman named Elaine declares her love for Sir Launcelot.

55 Sir Launcelot renounces his affair with Guenever and declares the penance he must undertake.

56 Sir Launcelot and Guenever make no attempts to hide their affair, which becomes a scandalous open secret at Camelot.

61 Sir Pellas the Good leaves quietly because Nimue warned him not to get involved.

62 A previously unknown enemy appears; he cites past history with a hero that motivates him to demand knightly satisfaction.

63 Someone talks about how wonderful Sir Launcelot is.

64 Someone talks about how wonderful Sir Galahad is.

65 A new character with the same name as an existing character is introduced.

66 Nacien interprets a dream.

EXAMPLE: I roll 2d6 and get two fours, for an eight. So eight events! 42, 51, 43, 32, 55, 43, 31, 61.

We open with Sir Palomides, crying in the woods. No doubt he pines for the lovely Isoud. Suddenly Sir Carados appears! Will he be friend or foe? Friend, it turns out. Sir Palomides, Sir Carados, and Sir Carados’s lady-friend whose name Malory doesn’t bother to supply go on a lengthy strange adventure together: they fight some giants and attend a tournament and so on.

The strange adventure concludes with a problem only Nimue can solve. An evil knight is cheating at the jousting with a special magic sword; Nimue uses magic to disarm him. Sir Palomides slays the evil knight. Sir Launcelot, present at this jousting tournament, is inspired by Sir Palomides’s knightliness. He picks a fight with Guenever and then he and Sir Palomides and Sir Carados’s lady-friend exit (Malory forgets Sir Carados was ever present). Sir Launcelot (incognito), Sir Palomides, and “the damosel” ride together through the woods, fighting several more knights. Launcelot and Palomides defend the damosel from multiple assaults.

Another damosel appears in a hermitage where the knights stay. Sir Carados’s lady-friend vanishes from the narrative, or maybe Malory meant that these are both the same damosel. Either way, the damosel knows of an important strange adventure she needs a valiant knight to assist her with. Sir Palomides and the damosel ride off for the strange adventure, leaving Launcelot alone at the hermitage. But not alone! For Sir Pellas the Good is also there. He and Launcelot greet one another, then part ways.

Does that sound like a random chapter in Book X, or does that sound like a random chapter in Book X?

Christ, what an asshole: an examination of the many crimes of Sir Tristram



  1. When Famous Hebes appears, with love letters from his college girlfriend the daughter of King Faramon of France, Tristram not only refuses to maintain their long-distance relationship, he declines to even send Hebes back with a breakup letter! She later dies of grief.
  2. On the occasion of his very first joust, against Sir Marhaus, Tristram instructs Gouvernail not to give Tristram a funeral if he fails and dies; this despite the funeral being important to Tristram’s parents and family and loved ones.
  3. When Tristram defeats Marhaus, and Marhaus staggers off to die with part of Tristram’s sword lodged in his brain, Tristram takes the time to mock and insult Marhaus for fleeing instead of dying right there on the beach.
  4. In Ireland Tristram adopts the pseudonym Tramtrist, which is so awful I don’t think I need to elaborate.
  5. Even while allegedly falling in love with the lovely Isoud, Tristram maintains his “Tramtrist” lie; he may claim to love her but he isn’t honest with her.
  6. After defeating Palomides at their first jousting tournament, Tristram chases him out of the arena and harasses Palomides, harassing and assaulting him. Tristram is the ultimate sore winner.
  7. Then Tristram threatened to murder Palomides if he wouldn’t stop courting Isoud.
  8. When the truth came out and Tristram fled Ireland, he first stopped by Marhaus’s relatives and mocked and insulted them for their failure to challenge him to open combat.
  9. Despite his tearful farewell with the lovely Isoud, and the promise rings they exchanged, once Tristram is back in Cornwall he immediately disregards his obligations to Isoud in favor of a tawdry affair with Sally Segwarides
  10. Sally Segwarides is a married woman, while we’re at it. Tristram has no problems with cuckolding Segwarides.
  11. After Sally ran off with Sir Bleoberis, the romantics in Mark’s court demanded he chase after her, as her paramour; he declined on the grounds he didn’t particularly care about her.
  12. Sir Tristram arrogantly charges Sagramour and Dodinas, despite Gouvernail’s suggested caution. He escalates, rather than deescalates, during his short conversation with them.
  13. When Sally, offered the choice between him and Bleoberis, doesn’t choose him, Tristram throws a little hissy fit and complains that if he’d known Sally wasn’t going to choose him he’d never have given her a choice.
  14. When Tristram and the lovely Isoud reunite, Tristram fails completely to mention his affair with Sally at all.
  15. He also takes his sweet time before leveling with her about how he intends to bring to her to Mark to marry, rather than marry her himself.
  16. At Castle Weeping, not only is Tristram down with showing off the lovely Isoud as if she’s a piece of meat, he pokes Isoud multiple times with his sword, to get her to act more sexy.
  17. When Breunor shows reluctance to chop his lady’s head off, Tristram steps in and does the job, rather than making it a day with zero lady-decapitations.
  18. Then when Breunor surrenders, Tristram refuses to accept the surrender and instead chops Breunor’s head off!
  19. And then he has the gall to claim the moral high ground when Mister 100’s knights rush the jousting field because they think Galahad has won!
  20. When he finds Sir Adtherp lying wounded in the road, he ignores Adtherp’s injuries and abandons him to die.
  21. When he reaches Castle Adtherp and finds Palomides asleep, he makes his manservant poke Palomides with a stick, instead of waking him himself.
  22. When Mark tries to confront Tristram about his affair with the lovely Isoud, Tristram ends up chasing Mark around Tintagil with his own sword and humiliating the man.
  23. Afterwards Tristram rides off into the woods to sulk, which he didn’t tell Isoud about in advance or anything; he just jerks her around.
  24. Despite knowing how unchivalrous it is to take advantage of Lamorak’s exhaustion, Tristram allows Mark to cajole him into jousting his French friend.
  25. Then Tristram compounds the error and refuses to continue to fight Lamorak on foot, which angers Lamorak far more than the jousting itself.
  26. Tristram boasts of his prowess and insults Andred at his lynching, rather than taking the classy way out.
  27. In Brittany, Tristram marries Isoud the White, betraying the lovely Isoud, but he refuses to consummate their marriage, betraying his marriage vows. He satisfies neither Isoud.
  28. On the Isle of Servage, when fighting Sir Nabon, Tristram ignores the de facto timeout of Nabon’s attempt to converse and kills him.
  29. Then he rushes over and lops off the head of Nabon’s son, apparently on the grounds that maybe Sir Nabon Junior would have demanded vengeance; this even though the son was sitting in the stands.
  30. When, in the forest of North Wales, he bumps into Lamorak, he demands a joust for no reason, and then makes his brother-in-law Sir Kehydius joust Lamorak first.
  31. Then when he and Lamorak realize they know one another, Tristram dredges up an old dispute long since settled, and uses it as an excuse to attack Lamorak again.
  32. When Lamorak tries to apologize and surrender, just to get Tristram to stop attacking him, Tristram gets all high and mighty and refuses to accept the surrender, then insists on surrendering to Lamorak himself.
  33. When Sir Kay tries to deescalate his conflict with Tristram via the language of jousting, Tristram refuses, though he’s willing to joust Sir Tor and Sir Brandiles.
  34. After Nimue recruits Tristram to rescue Arthur from Dame Annowre, Tristram refuses to tell King Arthur his name, for no reason beyond cussedness.
  35. Tristram literally forgets that he was married to Isoud the White, and that he’d become the king of Brittany, once he’s back in Cornwall basking in the radiance of the lovely Isoud.
  36. Despite very little evidence, Tristram assumes Kehydius is having an affair with the lovely Isoud behind his back.
  37. Goes crazy for a year on very little basis
  38. When he and the lovely Isoud are finally reunited, rather than profess his love or make any attempt to please his only-recently-suicidal paramour, Tristram throws a little hissy fit; when the lovely Isoud declares that Tristram had to flee Cornwall, he becomes even more petulant.
  39. When Mark does exile him from Cornwall, Tristram eschews an opportunity to be the bigger man. Instead he gives a lengthy speech about how great he is and how much the Cornish aristocracy would miss him and how they all sucked.
  40. When his traveling companion, Sir Dinadan, expresses reluctance to fight 10:1 odds, Tristram insults him and tries to bully him into going along with it anyway.
  41. After Dinadan, against his better judgement, rescued Tristram from the 10:1 odds fight, four Knights of the Round Table applauded Tristram’s valor. Tristram totally fails to give any credit whatsoever to Dinadan for the rescue, though without it Tristram would have died.
  42. When Dinadan notes the utter pointlessness of jousting knights just for the right to sleep in a crummy castle, Tristram bullies him into going along with it anyway.
  43. Afterwards Tristram bullies Dinadan into jousting Sir Gaheris and Sir Palomides, for no good reason.
  44. And when Dinadan refuses, Tristram acts like he’s the aggrieved party!
  45. Then when Dinadan tries to quit being his traveling companion, Tristram won’t let him.
  46. When Sir Kay and Sir Sagramour want to joust with him en route to the Castle of the Maidens tournament, he refuses and instead knocks them down.
  47. When Sir Gawaine loses a joust to Pitiless Bruce and Bruce starts riding his horse back and forth over Gawaine, trampling him, Tristram waits until Gawaine has been stomped on a couple of dozen times before intervening.
  48. On the eve of the Castle of the Maidens tournament, Tristram jousts Palomides and is an extremely sore loser.
  49. Tristram leaves that tournament at the end of the second day, before the prizes were given, because he just didn’t care about showing any respect to the judges I guess and blew off the awards ceremony.
  50. After the tournament ends and Tristram has defeated Palomides yet again, he picks a fight with Sir Gaheris for no good reason. Gaheris is just passing by.
  51. He pulls the leaving-early jerk trick again at the end of the tournament, too.
  52. For no clear reason, Tristram pranks Palomides when they meet after the tournament, pretending to have already recovered from his wounds. Just straight-up lying for fun.
  53. Tristram bullies Sir Dinadan yet again into jousting, this time Sir Lucan at Sir Darras’s estate.
  54. When Sir Darras offers to free Tristram provided he promise not to kill any more of Darras’s sons, Tristram grimly asserts he can’t make that promise.
  55. At the Hard Rock Castle tournament, Tristram is needlessly rude to Arthur, hostile and antagonistic; Arthur only asks him about the device on his shield.
  56. Immediately after rescuing Palomides from Pitiless Bruce, Tristram claims not to recognize him.
  57. Then when Palomides identifies himself, Tristram calls him his enemy and attacks him.
  58. After Palomides explains why he’d been fighting Pitiless Bruce and asks Tristram to help him assault Bruce’s tower, Tristram refuses.
  59. When he sees the Fair Knight sleeping peacefully by a well, Tristram can’t leave well enough alone and pokes him with a spear until he wakes up.
  60. He blows off Sir Galardoun’s widow’s request to help her dispose of Galardoun’s body.
  61. He claims not to know Sir Gawaine or Sir Bleoberis, despite having gone on strange adventures with both of them.
  62. He also claims not to know Sir Kay or Sir Dinadan, even though you can be sure he knows Sir Dinadan because look how many of these entries are Tristram being an asshole specifically to Dinadan!
  63. When Sagramour and Dodinas demand to joust with him, Tristram dehorses them and then rides away without further conversation, a substantial insult among knights.
  64. When Arthur meets Sir Lamorak, Tristram stops Dinadan from identifying Lamorak to Arthur, so he can do it himself and score points with the king.
  65. Back in Cornwall, Tristram flaunts his affair with Mark’s wife, almost making my sympathize with the wholly unsympathetic King Mark.
  66. Tristram teams up with Pitiless Bruce to victimize Sir Bleoberis, for no reason.
  67. When Sir Dinadan passes by a disguised Tristram, Tristram pretends to be someone else and insults Dinadan for no reason.
  68. Then next time he sees him, he does it again.
  69. Disguised, he asks Sir Palomides whom he most hates, and gets all huffy when Palomides claims to hate Tristram most.
  70. When his host accuses Tristram of murdering the host’s son, in a castle one night on the way to LONAZEP, Tristram is super cavalier and unapologetic about it.
  71. He lets Sir Palomides joust Sir Galihodin and twenty knights, for the lovely Isoud’s honor, though technically it’s Tristram, not Palomides, who is Isoud’s champion.
  72. At LONAZEP, he refuses to tell King Arthur his identity, despite being a Knight of the Round Table (!).
  73. Then he refuses to explain why he’s gone undercover as Sir Guy Incognito.
  74. And then even though he’s a Knight of the Round Table he signs on under the King of Scotland, just to spite Arthur.
  75. At the end of the LONAZEP tournament, Tristram confronts an unhappy Palomides not to reassure, but to gloat about being the better jouster.
  76. After making a big deal about how Sir Palomides had better not use some excuse to weasel out of their planned joust, Tristram gets himself shot with an arrow and claims the injury precludes their combat.
  77. When at long last Palomides agrees to be baptized, Tristram has to beat up a guy first and steal his armor, then force him to stand as Palomides’s godfather. You could have just asked, Tristram!


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