BY ROBERT SOUTHEY 1872.
rindalaya , the lady whom Amadis had delivered, made such dole over him as was pitiful to hear. The wife of Arcalaus comforted her so well as she could, for she was of disposition clean contrary to her husband, and always besought God in her prayers to turn his heart. As they were thus together, they saw two damsels enter the hall, each bearing in her hands many lighted candles, which they placed along the sides of the chamber wherein Amadis lay; the ladies who beheld them this while being neither able to speak nor move. One of the damsels took a book from a casket which she brought under her arm, and read from it aloud, and at times a voice answered her, and presently the answers were made by many voices together, as tho' an hundred, and all in the chamber. Then there came another book through the floor of the chamber, whirling as if driven by the wind, and it stopt at the feet of her who read, and she took and broke it into four parts, and burnt them, at the sides of the chamber where the candles stood. Then she went to Amadis, and took him by the hand! Arise, Sir, for you lie uneasily? and Amadis arose and cried, Holy Mary! what is this? I was well nigh dead. Certes, sir knight, replied the damsel, such a man as you should not perish in this sort, for by your hand must others die who better deserve it! and with that, without more words, both damsels returned thither from whence they came.
Then Amadis asked what had past, and Grindalaya told him all. I felt him disarm me, said he, but all seemed as in a dream. Then arming himself in the harness of Arcalaus, he said to his wife, look to this lady well till I return ; and he went to deliver Gandalin. The men of Arcalaus seeing him thus armed, ran all ways ; but he descended the steps, and through the hall where he had slain the jaylor, and so to the dungeon: a dreadful place it was for the captives: in length, an hundred times as far as a man's spread arms can reach; one only and a half of that span wide ; dark, for neither light nor air could enter, and so full that it was crowded. Amadis came to the door and called, Gandalin! but he, who was like one dead, hearing the voice was greatly terrified, and made no answer, for he believed that his master was slain, and he himself enchanted. Gandalin? where art thou? again cried Amadis. 0 God! will he not answer? and he said to the prisoners, tell me for God's sake is the squire living whom they have just now cast here? but then the dwarf knew his voice, and answered, Here we are! Thereat greatly rejoicing, Amadis went to the lamp in the hall, and kindled torches and took them to the dungeon, and loosed Gandalin's chain, for he lay nearest the door, and bade him deliver his comrades.
They came from the dungeon, an hundred and fifteen men in all, of whom thirty were knights, and they followed Amadis, exclaiming, 0 fortunate knight! even so did our Saviour go out from hell, leading away his servants whom he had delivered. Christ give thee thy reward! and, when they came to the sun-light and open sky, they fell upon their knees, and with lifted hands blest God who had given that knight strength to their deliverance.
Amadis seeing their faces so pale and overspent, that they seemed like dead rather than living creatures, was moved to exceeding compassion. One among them he remarked for his better shape and stature, who came forward and asked what they should call their deliverer; and hearing it was Amadis, replied that he also was of King Lisuarte's court, being by name Brandoyuas. Right glad was Amadis thereof, for he had often heard his good report, and the sorrow that there was for his loss. The other prisoners then confessed their bounden duty to him, and desired him to appoint what they should do, and he willed them each to do as he thought best. They telling him that wherever they might be they should be at his command, departed ; Brandoyuas and two squires only remaining with Amadis.
They now went to the wife of Arcalaus. Lady, said Amadis, for your sake, and the sake of these women, I forbear to set the castle on fire. She an swered him weeping, God is witness of the trouble and grief I endure for my husband's evil ways; but I must obey him, and pray for his amendment: now I am at your mercy. Then Amadis requested arms for Brandoyuas, and fit garments for Grindalaya; Give them, said he, if it please you, at your free will: the horse and arms of Arcalaus I must take, for he hath taken mine, and with them a sword of more value than all this! This the dame willingly accorded, and she besought them to take food before they departed, and the best viands were brought forth that so short warning could afford. But Grindalaya could not eat, uneasy to be gone; whereat the knights smiled, and still more at the dwarf, who could eat nothing and scarcely could he speak, and his colour was gone. Dwarf, said Amadis, shall we wait for Arcalaus, that I may give thee the boon which you released? Sir, said he, so dear hath that cost me, that never while I live will I beg another: let us go before the devil comes back again. I cannot stand upon the leg he hung me by, and my nose is so full of the brimstone smoke of that fire that I can do nothing but sneeze. So after they had repasted they took leave of the dame, and she commending Amadis to God said, I pray God that there may be peace between me and you ! Certes, lady, quoth he, however that may be, there will be peace between you and me, for you have deserved it. And the time came when these words greatly profited that lady.
They departed together, and on the second day separated, Grindalaya and Brandoyuas going to the court of Lisuarte ; Amadis pursuing his search. And where wilt thou go, my friend? said he to the dwarf. I would remain and be your servant, quoth he, and he kissed the hand of Amadis as his master. Not far had they travelled when they met one of the damsels who had disenchanted him ; she was lamenting loudly, and Amadis enquired wherefore. Yonder knight hath taken a casket from me, which will not profit him, though with its contents the best knight in the world was delivered from death by me and my companion, whom another knight hath now carried off with design to force her. Now the damsel knew not Amadis, by reason that his bever was closed. But he forthwith galloping on overtook the knight, and soon forced from him the casket, and restored it to the damsel, and then hastened to her friend's deliverance. Her he found struggling with the knight, who seeing him took his arms: In an evil hour dost thou hinder me of my will! God confound such a will! quoth Amadis. If I do not revenge myself, said the knight, may I never carry arms. The world will lose little by that, quoth he of Gaul; and meeting him in full career, drove him to the earth with a force that broke his neck, and then trampled him under his horse's feet.
Amadis took off his helmet, and immediately the damsel knew him, and he remembered her, for it was she who had led him to deliver Urganda's friend from Castle Bradoyd. By this her companion with Gandalin was come up, and they both embraced him, and thanked him for their deliverance. On my faith, said he, in worse danger was I when you succoured me: how knew ye of my plight? She who had taken him by the hand answered, My Aunt Urganda bade me ten days ago hasten to be there by that hour. So Amadis commended himself to that his true friend, and courteously taking leave of the damsels, they departed each on their way.