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La Chatelaine de Vergi - part 7
(By Ysabeau de Vergi as appeared in the April 1990 Bolt)

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La Chatelaine de Vergi - part 7

Our story so far...

A knight loves a lady, the lady loves the knight, according to a sacred covenant; she'll be his until the hour and the day that through him their love would be discovered.

The knight works for a duke, whose duchess puts the moves on the knight, but he turns her down as he cannot dishonor his lord (or the lady he really loves).

To get revenge (hell hath no fury, and all that) the duchess tells the duke that the knight betrayed him by pleading for her love.

The duke banishes the knight, but says if he has another love to tell him of it and he'll reconsider. The knight swears him to secrecy.

So, the knight takes the duke to his trysting place, where the duke sees the knight and his lady (who also happens to be the duke's niece). He realizes that they are truly in love and the the knight has not betrayed him after all.

Now, on with our story.

The knight was at such a point
In his thoughts and words
When the duke reached him, gathered him into his arms,
And joyfully made much of him.
Then said to him. "I promise
That I will love you always,
And never will I hate you,
Because all that you told me is true,
And you did not speak one untrue word to me."
"Sire," he said, "many thanks!
But for God's sake, I ask and beg of you
To please conceal this secret,
For I will lose my love, my joy, and my happiness;
And will die without a doubt,
If I know that any other
Knows of this except for you."
"Now, do not speak of it," said the duke.
"Know that it will be well guarded;
That never will it be spoken of by me."
Speaking thus, they came
To the place from which they had left.
And on that day, when came the meal time,
The duke showed the knight
A better humor than ever he had ever done;
Which caused such anger and hatred
In the duchess,
That she got up from the table
And made as if she had been taken by illness.
And the duke, when he had eaten
And washed and fully enjoyed himself,
Went to see her.
He made her sit down on her bed,
And ordered that no one
Should remain in the chamber except for himself.
At once what he commanded was done,
And right away the duke asked her
How this illness had come upon her,
And what was wrong.
She answered, "May God never forgive me.
I had never thought
Until now, when I sat down to dine,
That better sense and better judgement
You did not have than I saw
When you hold more dear he
Who I told you sought
For me shame and dishonor;
And when I saw you being more friendly
With him than ever before,
I had such pain and anger
That I was no longer able to remain."
"Ah!" said the duke, "My sweet friend,
I will not be made to believe
Neither by you nor any other creature,
That ever by any means
What you told me came to pass;
Know well that he is wholly innocent,
And never thought to do thus.
So much have I learned of the business;
Do not ask me any more of it."

To be continued....

 Page last updated 12/28/99