Primary Sources: Le Morte D’Arthur, Book XVII, Chapters 21 and 22
When last we left off, the grail-knights had just arrived at Sarras. Sarras! It’s a magical, mystical city which exists only for purposes of this story, apparently!
Percivale points out that the boat he loaded Magdalena’s corpse into has already docked. This is the boat Sir Launcelot abandoned back in Chapter 14, which you’ve probably forgotten is a different boat than the one that Galahad and Percivale and Bors (and Magdalena when she was alive) have been gallivanting around in.
The knights exit the magical ship. They take the Grail with them, loaded on a heavy silver Grail-tray that came with it. Along the way Galahad heals a crippled beggar, so that he can help carry the tray (one person at each corner). Then they have to run back and make another trip to grab Mags’s corpse from the other boat.
And then they hold a special Grail-authenticated funeral ceremony for Mags! She’s only been dead for about a dozen chapters. I’m sure that’s fine. Afterwards the king of Sarras, King Estorause, asks who they are and why they have a cup on a big silver tray and a dead woman and so on.
“I’ve been wondering for a while now,” explains Estorhause. “But it seemed impolite to bother you with questions until the funeral was over.”
Galahad explains that they’re on special Grail business, for Jesus.
Estorhause does a double-take. “Jesus! Man, I hate that guy!” And our heroes get thrown in prison in a deep hole. Dun dun DUN!!
You might think this is bad thing and a setback for Galahad, Percivale, and Bors. But you forget: God is on their side! They hang out at the bottom of the hole, sustained by the power of the Grail, and wait for Estorhause to suddenly have a stroke. This takes a month.
Dying, Estorhause manages to order the knights released from prison and apologize to them, before his brain seizes up entirely and he passes away. And then, for no clear reason, suddenly Galahad is the king! There’s some noise about a voice among the people, maybe Nacien disguised with a big hat, shouting about how Galahad should be king, but come on. Clearly the fix is in. The inhabitants of Sarras (the Saracens?) offer Galahad two options: become king, or get killed.
Though he was all fired up for death in the last chapter, Galahad picks king! He gets a crown and builds a nice tabernacle to keep the Grail in. Bors, his vice-king, and Percivale, his King House Chief of Staff, join him in daily Grail-prayers.
A year of this goes by.
Primary Sources: Le Morte D’Arthur, Book XVII, Chapters 21 and 22 — No Comments
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