Hours later a maiden comes in with Launcelot’s dinner. Let’s call her Becca. Have I used Becca? I don’t think I have. Becca comes in with a plate of cold stew for Launcelot, and a pitcher of ale, and she asks him how he’s doing.
“Not great. I’m a prisoner of Morgan le Fay and her sorceress-queen bridge club.”
“Whatever. My point is, it sucks.”
“I can see why you’d think that,” says Becca. “I’d love to help you out. But you need to help me out, you know? I need you to do something, and it’s not an evil thing or anything, but you need to promise.”
“If it’ll get me away from Morgan le Fay, sure,” says Launcelot. “She’s scary.”
“I know you’re Sir Launcelot du Lake, the Man from Benwick, most flowery blossom of the flower of chivalry, who never loses at tournaments. My father’s going to be in a tournament next Tuesday, and he’s lost the last three bouts, because the other side has been bringing in ringers from King Arthur’s court.”
“Wait, who’s your father?”
“He used to be at Camelot — Sir Bagdemagus?”
“Bagdemagus!” cries Launcelot. “I know him. He was up for Round Table membership early in Book IV. I’ll absolutely help him out, fight on his side in this tourney.”
So late that night, Becca sneaks into Launcelot’s cell, and unlocks the twelve different locks securing Launcelot in his prison. She leads him out to where she stashed his armor, and helps him armor up, and then Becca leads him to where she stowed his horse (exactly how Launcelot’s horse made it to Castle Chariot from the apple-tree where it was left, that’s an exercise for the reader I guess, thanks Malory!).
“There’s a monastery ten miles up the road from here,” she tells him. “Wait there, and I’ll be along tomorrow. I’ll take you to my father then.”
“Agreed,” says Launcelot, and rides off.
Problem! It’s very dark in Arthurian England at night, especially on moonless overcast nights. Launcelot gets lost in about thirty seconds, and loses the road, and stumbles around in the woods like an imbecile. He feels pretty dumb about it, but at last he finds a tent out there, in the woods, a bright red one.
“Okay,” he says to himself. “I’ll tie up my horse and sleep here, and wait until morning. I’ll be able to see in the morning.” So he ties up his horse, goes into the tent, and lies down on the cot inside.
Sir Launcelot: he sleeps kind of a lot.
Needless to say, this tent was not a tent that someone pitched with the intention of hosting Sir Launcelot. No, in point of fact this tent belongs to a knight name of Sir Bellus, who set it up specifically for a tryst with his girlfriend, DeeDee. He and DeeDee agreed to meet late that night, so when Bellus gets to the tent (in the dark) and feels that there’s someone already in the cot, he assumes it’s her. So naturally Bellus climbs in and starts making out with the person in the cot.
Launcelot wakes up to a rough beard kissing him, as Malory puts it, and so naturally he does what any red-blooded Knight of the Round Table would do under the circumstances: he screams, leaps out of bed, grabs a sword, and starts swinging it wildly.
Bellus picks up on Launcelot’s hostility, and soon he’s got his own sword out. Bellus assumes that Launcelot is there for DeeDee — maybe she’s cheating on him with this guy? — and so doesn’t stop to ask pertinent questions. Launcelot, for his part, assumes that whoever it was that abducted Lionel has come for him (since, Malory forgot to mention in the previous scene you guys, but it’s so, Launcelot found out from Becca that Morgan le Fay didn’t have Lionel prisoner).
They fight a bit, and of course Launcelot has the upper hand right away, and stabs Bellus in the stomach, and this is the point at which they determine that it’s all be a hilarious misunderstanding, and Bellus explains why he’s there, and Launcelot explains why he’s there, and DeeDee shows up and she’s upset at first, what with Bellus’s bad wound, but by the end of the scene they’re all just laughing about it, Love, American Style style.
As an apology for wounding Bellus, Launcelot tells DeeDee that once Bellus is recovered, they should both go to Camelot, where surely King Arthur will fete them both and probably promote Bellus to the Round Table. By the time the scene is done, it’s after dawn, and there’s light sufficient for Launcelot to make his way to the abbey he was bound for in the first place.