Lady Lyonet needed help in a desperate way. Her sister, Lady Lyoness, was the prisoner of the vile Red Knight, who coveted Lyoness’ lands and fortune. Lyonet tore across the land and arrived in Caerleon before King Arthur on Whitsunday.
Lyonet told the king about the evil things the Red Knight had done but didn’t mention Lyoness’ name. Lyoness had made Lyonet promise to withhold her name because so many knights had already tried to rescue her and failed. Without knowing the damsel’s name, Arthur would not grant his knights to go. However, a young man who worked in the kitchen stepped forward and promised to go and rescue Lyonet’s sister.
Having no choice, Lyonet agreed. And after Sir Lancelot knighted the young man, they set out to rescue Lyoness. They had to go through the dreaded Black Lands and the Black Knight who ruled there. To Lyonet’s great surprise, the young kitchen knight won!
After defeating several other opponents, Lyonet began to consider there was more to this young kitchen worker than she first thought. He finally revealed he was actually Gareth, the King of Orkney’s son. Also, Sir Gawain and Sir Gaheris were his older brothers. Gareth wanted to keep his identity hidden from Arthur until he could prove himself a knight worthy of the Round Table.
Lyonet then had to admit forty knights had already tried to rescue Lyoness and been killed. But upon seeing Lyoness from the top tower window, Sir Gareth’s courage was bolstered and called out the evil knight. They fought many hours, until finally the Red Knight yielded.
Sir Gareth and Lady Lyoness were married soon after. But Lady Lyonet didn’t mind. One look at Gareth’s older brother, Sir Gaheris, was all it took to forget about Gareth. Lady Lyonet and Sir Gaheris fell deeply in love and were married as well.
What do you think about the story? If Gareth knew the truth before leaving with Lyonet, would he still have gone?
Watch for Ragnell’s story next month.