“Okay, well, compared to my sorrow, your sorrow is japes. Your sorrow is laughter and prancing around and putting buckets of water on ajar doors and cans of peanut brittle that actually have snakes in them, and all that kind of stuff,” says Epinogris. “Get this: I used to have a girlfriend and now I don’t!”
“Get out,” says Palomides, all full of sympathy.
Long story short, Epinogris was dating some earl’s daughter whose name Malory doesn’t think is important. I’m going to call her Ophelia. At the tournament Epinogris killed her father and one of his henchmen, in a legit jousting situation, so there was nobody to stop him from totally sexing Ophelia up. But then another knight came along and jousted him for her! This other knight, Sir “Valiant” Helior, smacked him around (hence Epinogris’s wounds) and then rode off with Ophelia. Rescuing her from her abductor, one might almost say.
“So you can see how my pain is worse than yours. I won Ophelia, she was an object I won. I killed her dad so she was my property. I had her, and then stupid Valiant Helior stole her from me. Owning a girl and then losing her is way worse than never owning her in the first place.”
“True that,” says Palomides. “Heck, I’m not wounded. Let’s you and me go steal her back!”
Epinogris is down with this, so he and Palomides mount up and ride in the direction Valiant Helior went. Pretty soon they come to an hermitage, which is a major rest stop, with a dozen knights already lounging around resting from their travels and swapping Lonazep tournament stories. Palomides spots a guy he thinks is Sir Ector the Lesser, and avoids him. It’s actually Palomides’s brother Sir Safere, who borrowed Ector’s shield.
While Epinogris rests (he was wounded, remember) Palomides hunts around and finds Valiant Helior in the company of Ophelia.
“I’ve come to steal your property!” cries Palomides, or words to that effect. He makes to joust Valiant Helior, but Safere cuts in front of him and jousts Helior instead, for like an hour.
While Safere defeats Helior in the background, Palomides makes his way over to Ophelia.
“Excuse me,” he says. “You know a knight named Epinogris?”
“Epinogris!” she cries. “He murdered my father! And we used to date! I wish I’d never known him! And now he’s dead!” She starts to weep.
“Whoa, whoa, calm down,” Palomides says. “He’s not dead. Who told you he was dead? He’s over there, resting. C’mon, I’ll walk you over to him.”
Ophelia is so shocked to learn Epinogris hasn’t already died that she completely forgets she hated him! She’s eager to see him, in fact. She and Palomides start over towards the far end of the hermitage, where Epinogris is, but Safere stops them.
Safere just defeated Sir Helior in combat (Helior threw down his weapon and unlaced his armor and pleaded for his life in a way that totally undermined his “Valiant” nickname) and now he wants Ophelia for himself.
“I don’t want any trouble, Ector,” says Palomides.
“Ector? Who’s Ector?” Safere just picked up Ector’s shield off the tournament ground, like it was a lost umbrella. “What’re you trying to pull, calling me Ector?”
“Well, who are you?”
Of course when Safere and Palomides identify one another as brothers, they laugh and weep and kiss and wail so loudly that it wakes up Sir Epinogris, who grabs his sword and limps over to them, in case Palomides is losing a joust and needs to be rescued.
Ultimately Safere and Palomides and Epinogris and Ophelia all go together back to Epinogris’s castle and have a party.