Last entry was a little long, this one is short.  These things happen!

 

Sir Bors, having just defeated the Devil (without resorting to self-mutilation) stands alone in the wilderness.  In the distance he hears a churchbell ringing, and he takes that for a sign.  Following the sound of the bell, he comes to an abbey, closed with high walls.

As he approaches the gate, it opens, and they looked him over.  Malory is vague as to who ‘they’ are.  Monks, I guess?  Let’s go with that.

“I suppose you’re on the Quest for the Holy Grail,” says one of the monks.  “Come on, let’s get you out of that armor and into a hot bath.”

So they lead him to a guest-room in the abbey, where he pulls off his armor and stretches and scrubs himself down and so on.  It’s been a while since Bors had any kind of decent respite.

“Is Nacien here?” asks Bors, once he’s done.  “Any holy man in this house would do, really.”

“Sure sure.”  A monk leads Bors through the abbey, to a chapel where he meets the abbey’s abbot.  To everyone’s surprise, it’s explicitly not Nacien.

Bors introduces himself and starts to recap his entire madcap adventure, but the abbot stops him with a weary shake of the head.  “Sir Knight, I wot not what ye be, for I weened never that a knight of your age might have been so strong in the grace of our Lord Jesu Christ.”

“Beg pardon?”

“You say you’re a Grail-questing knight, but you aren’t Sir Percivale or Sir Galahad.  You’re older, you’ve had plenty of opportunities to sleep with women and father illegitimate children (such as your son Helin aka your daughter Elaine, your child by Princess King-Brandegore’s-Daughter).  And yet not only have you defeated the Devil and made it this far, you did it without cutting any of your members off!  That’s crazy.”

“Oh ah.”  Bors isn’t really sure what to make of this.

“Right now I’m overwhelmed and unable to converse with you,” continues the abbot, “but I expect I’ll be better in the morning.  So you stay overnight and tomorrow over breakfast I’ll give you some holy-man advice.  That’s why I’m here.”


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Primary Sources: Le Morte D’Arthur, Book VI Chapter 12 — No Comments

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