Sir Agravaine by P. G. Wodehouse
A TALE OF KING ARTHUR'S ROUND TABLE
SOME time ago, when spending a delightful week-end at the ancestral
castle of my dear old friend, the Duke of Weatherstonhope (pronounced
Wop), I came across an old black-letter MS. It is on this that the
story which follows is based.
I have found it necessary to touch the thing up a little here and
there, for writers in those days were weak in construction. Their idea
of telling a story was to take a long breath and start droning away
without any stops or dialogue till the thing was over.
I have also condensed the title. In the original it ran, '"How it came
about that ye good Knight Sir Agravaine ye Dolorous of ye Table Round
did fare forth to succour a damsel in distress and after divers
journeyings and perils by flood and by field did win her for his bride
and right happily did they twain live ever afterwards," by Ambrose ye
It was a pretty snappy title for those days, but we have such a high
standard in titles nowadays that I have felt compelled to omit a few
yards of it.
We may now proceed to the story.
The great tournament was in full swing. All through the afternoon
boiler-plated knights on mettlesome chargers had hurled themselves on
each other's spears, to the vast contentment of all. Bright eyes shone;
handkerchiefs fluttered; musical voices urged chosen champions to knock
the cover off their brawny adversaries. The cheap seats had long since
become hoarse with emotion. All round the arena rose the cries of
itinerant merchants: 'Iced malvoisie,' 'Score-cards; ye cannot tell the
jousters without a score-card.' All was revelry and excitement.
A hush fell on the throng. From either end of the arena a mounted
knight in armour had entered.
The herald raised his hand.
'Ladeez'n gemmen! Battling Galahad and Agravaine the Dolorous. Galahad
on my right, Agravaine on my left. Squires out of the ring. Time!'
A speculator among the crowd offered six to one on Galahad, but found
no takers. Nor was the public's caution without reason.
A moment later the two had met in a cloud of dust, and Agravaine,
shooting over his horse's crupper, had fallen with a metallic clang.
He picked himself up, and limped slowly from the arena. He was not
unused to this sort of thing. Indeed, nothing else had happened to him
in his whole jousting career.
The truth was that Sir Agravaine the Dolorous was out of his element at
King Arthur's court, and he knew it. It was this knowledge that had
given him that settled air of melancholy from which he derived his
Until I came upon this black-letter MS. I had been under the
impression, like, I presume, everybody else, that every Knight of the
Round Table was a model of physical strength and beauty. Malory says
nothing to suggest the contrary. Nor does Tennyson. But apparently
there were exceptions, of whom Sir Agravaine the Dolorous must have
been the chief.
There was, it seems, nothing to mitigate this unfortunate man's
physical deficiencies. There is a place in the world for the strong,
ugly man, and there is a place for the weak, handsome man. But to fall
short both in features and in muscle is to stake your all on brain. And
in the days of King Arthur you did not find the populace turning out to
do homage to brain. It was a drug on the market. Agravaine was a good
deal better equipped than his contemporaries with grey matter, but his
height in his socks was but five feet four; and his muscles, though he
had taken three correspondence courses in physical culture, remained
distressingly flaccid. His eyes were pale and mild, his nose snub, and
his chin receded sharply from his lower lip, as if Nature, designing
him, had had to leave off in a hurry and finish the job anyhow. The
upper teeth, protruding, completed the resemblance to a nervous rabbit.
Handicapped in this manner, it is no wonder that he should feel sad and
lonely in King Arthur's court. At heart he ached for romance; but
romance passed him by. The ladies of the court ignored his existence,
while, as for those wandering damsels who came periodically to Camelot
to complain of the behaviour of dragons, giants, and the like, and to
ask permission of the king to take a knight back with them to fight
their cause (just as, nowadays, one goes out and calls a policeman), he
simply had no chance. The choice always fell on Lancelot or some other
The tournament was followed by a feast. In those brave days almost
everything was followed by a feast. The scene was gay and animated.
Fair ladies, brave knights, churls, varlets, squires, scurvy knaves,
men-at-arms, malapert rogues—all were merry. All save Agravaine. He
sat silent and moody. To the jests of Dagonet he turned a deaf ear. And
when his neighbour, Sir Kay, arguing with Sir Percivale on current
form, appealed to him to back up his statement that Sir Gawain, though
a workman-like middle-weight, lacked the punch, he did not answer,
though the subject was one on which he held strong views. He sat on,
As he sat there, a man-at-arms entered the hall.
'Your majesty,' he cried, 'a damsel in distress waits without.'
There was a murmur of excitement and interest.
'Show her in,' said the king, beaming.
The man-at-arms retired. Around the table the knights were struggling
into an upright position in their seats and twirling their moustaches.
Agravaine alone made no movement. He had been through this sort of
thing so often. What were distressed damsels to him? His whole
demeanour said, as plainly as if he had spoken the words, 'What's the
The crowd at the door parted, and through the opening came a figure at
the sight of whom the expectant faces of the knights turned pale with
consternation. For the new-comer was quite the plainest girl those
stately halls had ever seen. Possibly the only plain girl they had ever
seen, for no instance is recorded in our authorities of the existence
at that period of any such.
The knights gazed at her blankly. Those were the grand old days of
chivalry, when a thousand swords would leap from their scabbards to
protect defenceless woman, if she were beautiful. The present seemed
something in the nature of a special case, and nobody was quite certain
as to the correct procedure.
An awkward silence was broken by the king.
'Er—yes?' he said.
The damsel halted.
'Your majesty,' she cried, 'I am in distress. I crave help!'
'Just so,' said the king, uneasily, flashing an apprehensive glance at
the rows of perturbed faces before him. 'Just so. What—er—what is
the exact nature of the—ah—trouble? Any assistance these gallant
knights can render will, I am sure, be—ah—eagerly rendered.'
He looked imploringly at the silent warriors. As a rule, this speech
was the signal for roars of applause. But now there was not even a
'I may say enthusiastically,' he added.
Not a sound.
'Precisely,' said the king, ever tactful. 'And now—you were saying?'
'I am Yvonne, the daughter of Earl Dorm of the Hills,' said the damsel,
'and my father has sent me to ask protection from a gallant knight
against a fiery dragon that ravages the country-side.'
'A dragon, gentlemen,' said the king, aside. It was usually a safe
draw. Nothing pleased the knight of that time more than a brisk bout
with a dragon. But now the tempting word was received in silence.
'Fiery,' said the king.
Some more silence.
The king had recourse to the direct appeal. 'Sir Gawain, this Court
would be greatly indebted to you if—'
Sir Gawain said he had strained a muscle at the last tournament.
The king's voice was growing flat with consternation. The situation was
Sir Pelleas said he had an ingrowing toe-nail.
The king's eye rolled in anguish around the table. Suddenly it stopped.
It brightened. His look of dismay changed to one of relief.
A knight had risen to his feet. It was Agravaine.
'Ah!' said the king, drawing a deep breath.
Sir Agravaine gulped. He was feeling more nervous than he had ever felt
in his life. Never before had he risen to volunteer his services in a
matter of this kind, and his state of mind was that of a small boy
about to recite his first piece of poetry.
It was not only the consciousness that every eye, except one of Sir
Balin's which had been closed in the tournament that afternoon, was
upon him. What made him feel like a mild gentleman in a post-office who
has asked the lady assistant if she will have time to attend to him
soon and has caught her eye, was the fact that he thought he had
observed the damsel Yvonne frown as he rose. He groaned in spirit. This
damsel, he felt, wanted the proper goods or none at all. She might not
be able to get Sir Lancelot or Sir Galahad; but she was not going to be
satisfied with a half-portion.
The fact was that Sir Agravaine had fallen in love at first sight. The
moment he had caught a glimpse of the damsel Yvonne, he loved her
devotedly. To others she seemed plain and unattractive. To him she was
a Queen of Beauty. He was amazed at the inexplicable attitude of the
knights around him. He had expected them to rise in a body to clamour
for the chance of assisting this radiant vision. He could hardly
believe, even now, that he was positively the only starter.
'This is Sir Agravaine the Dolorous,' said the king to the damsel.
'Will you take him as your champion?'
Agravaine held his breath. But all was well. The damsel bowed.
'Then, Sir Agravaine,' said the king, 'perhaps you had better have your
charger sent round at once. I imagine that the matter is pressing—time
and—er—dragons wait for no man.'
Ten minutes later Agravaine, still dazed, was jogging along to the
hills, with the damsel by his side.
It was some time before either of them spoke. The damsel seemed
preoccupied, and Agravaine's mind was a welter of confused thoughts,
the most prominent of which and the one to which he kept returning
being the startling reflection that he, who had pined for romance so
long, had got it now in full measure.
A dragon! Fiery withal. Was he absolutely certain that he was capable
of handling an argument with a fiery dragon? He would have given much
for a little previous experience of this sort of thing. It was too late
now, but he wished he had had the forethought to get Merlin to put up a
magic prescription for him, rendering him immune to dragon-bites. But
did dragons bite? Or did they whack at you with their tails? Or just
There were a dozen such points that he would have liked to have settled
before starting. It was silly to start out on a venture of this sort
without special knowledge. He had half a mind to plead a forgotten
engagement and go straight back.
Then he looked at the damsel, and his mind was made up. What did death
matter if he could serve her?
He coughed. She came out of her reverie with a start.
'This dragon, now?' said Agravaine.
For a moment the damsel did not reply. 'A fearsome worm, Sir Knight,'
she said at length. 'It raveneth by day and by night. It breathes fire
from its nostrils.'
'Does it!' said Agravaine. 'Does it! You couldn't give some
idea what it looks like, what kind of size it is?'
'Its body is as thick as ten stout trees, and its head touches the
'Does it!' said Agravaine thoughtfully. 'Does it!'
'Oh, Sir Knight, I pray you have a care.'
'I will,' said Agravaine. And he had seldom said anything more
fervently. The future looked about as bad as it could be. Any hopes
he may have entertained that this dragon might turn out to
be comparatively small and inoffensive were dissipated. This was
plainly no debilitated wreck of a dragon, its growth stunted by
excessive-fire-breathing. A body as thick as ten stout trees! He would
not even have the melancholy satisfaction of giving the creature
indigestion. For all the impression he was likely to make on that vast
interior, he might as well be a salted almond.
As they were speaking, a dim mass on the skyline began to take shape.
'Behold!' said the damsel. 'My father's castle.' And presently they
were riding across the drawbridge and through the great gate, which
shut behind them with a clang.
As they dismounted a man came out through a door at the farther end of
'Father,' said Yvonne, 'this is the gallant knight Sir Agravaine, who
has come to—' it seemed to Agravaine that she hesitated for a moment.
'To tackle our dragon?' said the father. 'Excellent. Come right in.'
Earl Dorm of the Hills, was a small, elderly man, with what Agravaine
considered a distinctly furtive air about him. His eyes were too close
together, and he was over-lavish with a weak, cunning smile. Even
Agravaine, who was in the mood to like the whole family, if possible,
for Yvonne's sake, could not help feeling that appearances were against
this particular exhibit. He might have a heart of gold beneath the
outward aspect of a confidence-trick expert whose hobby was dog-stealing,
but there was no doubt that his exterior did not inspire a genial glow
'Very good of you to come,' said the earl.
'It's a pleasure,' said Agravaine. 'I have been hearing all about the
'A great scourge,' agreed his host. 'We must have a long talk about it
It was the custom in those days in the stately homes of England for the
whole strength of the company to take their meals together. The guests
sat at the upper table, the ladies in a gallery above them, while the
usual drove of men-at-arms, archers, malapert rogues, varlets, scurvy
knaves, scullions, and plug-uglies attached to all medieval households,
squashed in near the door, wherever they could find room.
The retinue of Earl Dorm was not strong numerically—the household
being, to judge from appearances, one that had seen better days; but it
struck Agravaine that what it lacked in numbers it made up in
toughness. Among all those at the bottom of the room there was not one
whom it would have been agreeable to meet alone in a dark alley. Of
all those foreheads not one achieved a height of more than one point
nought four inches. A sinister collection, indeed, and one which,
Agravaine felt, should have been capable of handling without his
assistance any dragon that ever came into the world to stimulate the
He was roused from his reflections by the voice of his host.
'I hope you are not tired after your journey, Sir Agravaine? My little
girl did not bore you, I trust? We are very quiet folk here. Country
mice. But we must try to make your visit interesting.'
Agravaine felt that the dragon might be counted upon to do that. He
said as much.
'Ah, yes, the dragon,' said Earl Dorm, 'I was forgetting the dragon. I
want to have a long talk with you about that dragon. Not now. Later
His eye caught Agravaine's, and he smiled that weak, cunning smile of
his. And for the first time the knight was conscious of a curious
feeling that all was not square and aboveboard in this castle. A
conviction began to steal over him that in some way he was being played
with, that some game was afoot which he did not understand, that—in a
word—there was dirty work at the cross-roads.
There was a touch of mystery in the atmosphere which made him vaguely
uneasy. When a fiery dragon is ravaging the country-side to such an
extent that the S.O.S. call has been sent out to the Round Table, a
knight has a right to expect the monster to be the main theme of
conversation. The tendency on his host's part was apparently to avoid
touching on the subject at all. He was vague and elusive; and the one
topic on which an honest man is not vague and elusive is that of fiery
dragons. It was not right. It was as if one should phone for the police
and engage them, on arrival, in a discussion on the day's football
A wave of distrust swept over Agravaine. He had heard stories of robber
chiefs who lured strangers into their strongholds and then held them
prisoners while the public nervously dodged their anxious friends who
had formed subscription lists to make up the ransom. Could this be such
a case? The man certainly had an evasive manner and a smile which would
have justified any jury in returning a verdict without leaving the box.
On the other hand, there was Yvonne. His reason revolted against the
idea of that sweet girl being a party to any such conspiracy.
No, probably it was only the Earl's unfortunate manner. Perhaps he
suffered from some muscular weakness of the face which made him smile
Nevertheless, he certainly wished that he had not allowed himself to be
deprived of his sword and armour. At the time it had seemed to him that
the Earl's remark that the latter needed polishing and the former
stropping betrayed only a kindly consideration for his guest's well-being.
Now, it had the aspect of being part of a carefully-constructed plot.
On the other hand—here philosophy came to his rescue—if anybody did
mean to start anything, his sword and armour might just as well not be
there. Any one of those mammoth low-brows at the door could eat him,
armour and all.
He resumed his meal, uneasy but resigned.
Dinner at Earl Dorm's was no lunch-counter scuffle. It started early
and finished late. It was not till an advanced hour that Agravaine was
conducted to his room.
The room which had been allotted to him was high up in the eastern
tower. It was a nice room, but to one in Agravaine's state of
suppressed suspicion a trifle too solidly upholstered. The door was of
the thickest oak, studded with iron nails. Iron bars formed a neat
pattern across the only window.
Hardly had Agravaine observed these things when the door opened, and
before him stood the damsel Yvonne, pale of face and panting for
She leaned against the doorpost and gulped.
'Fly!' she whispered.
Reader, if you had come to spend the night in the lonely castle of a
perfect stranger with a shifty eye and a rogues' gallery smile, and on
retiring to your room had found the door kick-proof and the window
barred, and if, immediately after your discovery of these phenomena, a
white-faced young lady had plunged in upon you and urged you to
immediate flight, wouldn't that jar you?
It jarred Agravaine.
'Eh?' he cried.
'Fly! Fly, Sir Knight.'
Another footstep sounded in the passage. The damsel gave a startled
look over her shoulder.
'And what's all this?'
Earl Dorm appeared in the dim-lit corridor. His voice had a nasty
tinkle in it.
'Your—your daughter,' said Agravaine, hurriedly, 'was just telling me
that breakfast would—'
The sentence remained unfinished. A sudden movement of the earl's hand,
and the great door banged in his face. There came the sound of a bolt
shooting into its socket. A key turned in the lock. He was trapped.
Outside, the earl had seized his daughter by the wrist and was
administering a paternal cross-examination.
'What were you saying to him?'
Yvonne did not flinch.
'I was bidding him fly.'
'If he wants to leave this castle,' said the earl, grimly, 'he'll have
'Father,' said Yvonne,' I can't.'
His grip on her wrist tightened. From the other side of the door came
the muffled sound of blows on the solid oak. 'Oh?' said Earl Dorm.
'You can't, eh? Well, listen to me. You've got to. Do you understand? I
admit he might be better-looking, but—'
'Father, I love him.'
He released her wrist, and stared at her in the uncertain light.
'You love him!'
'Then what—? Why? Well, I never did understand women,' he said at
last, and stumped off down the passage.
While this cryptic conversation was in progress, Agravaine, his worst
apprehensions realized, was trying to batter down the door. After a few
moments, however, he realized the futility of his efforts, and sat down
on the bed to think.
At the risk of forfeiting the reader's respect, it must be admitted
that his first emotion was one of profound relief. If he was locked up
like this, it must mean that that dragon story was fictitious, and that
all danger was at an end of having to pit his inexperience against a
ravening monster who had spent a lifetime devouring knights. He had
never liked the prospect, though he had been prepared to go through
with it, and to feel that it was definitely cancelled made up for a
His mind next turned to his immediate future. What were they going to
do with him? On this point he felt tolerably comfortable. This
imprisonment could mean nothing more than that he would be compelled to
disgorge a ransom. This did not trouble him. He was rich, and, now that
the situation had been switched to a purely business basis, he felt
that he could handle it.
In any case, there was nothing to be gained by sitting up, so he went
to bed, like a good philosopher.
The sun was pouring through the barred window when he was awoken by the
entrance of a gigantic figure bearing food and drink.
He recognized him as one of the scurvy knaves who had dined at the
bottom of the room the night before—a vast, beetle-browed fellow with
a squint, a mop of red hair, and a genius for silence. To Agravaine's
attempts to engage him in conversation he replied only with grunts, and
in a short time left the room, closing and locking the door behind him.
He was succeeded at dusk by another of about the same size and
ugliness, and with even less conversational elan. This one did
not even grunt.
Small-talk, it seemed, was not an art cultivated in any great measure
by the lower orders in the employment of Earl Dorm.
The next day passed without incident. In the morning the strabismic
plug-ugly with the red hair brought him food and drink, while in the
evening the non-grunter did the honours. It was a peaceful life, but
tending towards monotony, and Agravaine was soon in the frame of mind
which welcomes any break in the daily round.
He was fortunate enough to get it.
He had composed himself for sleep that night, and was just dropping
comfortably off, when from the other side of the door he heard the
sound of angry voices.
It was enough to arouse him. On the previous night silence had reigned.
Evidently something out of the ordinary was taking place.
He listened intently and distinguished words.
'Who was it I did see thee coming down the road with?'
'Who was it thou didst see me coming down the road with?'
'Aye, who was it I did see thee coming down the road with?'
'Who dost thou think thou art?'
'Who do I think that I am?'
'Aye, who dost thou think thou art?'
Agravaine could make nothing of it. As a matter of fact, he was hearing
the first genuine cross-talk that had ever occurred in those dim,
pre-music-hall days. In years to come dialogue on these lines was to
be popular throughout the length and breadth of Great Britain. But
till then it had been unknown.
The voices grew angrier. To an initiated listener it would have been
plain that in a short while words would be found inadequate and the
dagger, that medieval forerunner of the slap-stick, brought into play.
But to Agravaine, all inexperienced, it came as a surprise when
suddenly with a muffled thud two bodies fell against the door. There
was a scuffling noise, some groans, and then silence.
And then with amazement he heard the bolt shoot back and a key grate in
The door swung open. It was dark outside, but Agravaine could
distinguish a female form, and, beyond, a shapeless mass which he took
correctly to be the remains of the two plug-uglies.
'It is I, Yvonne,' said a voice.
'What is it? What has been happening?'
'It was I. I set them against each other. They both loved one of the
kitchen-maids. I made them jealous. I told Walt privily that she had
favoured Dickon, and Dickon privily that she loved Walt. And now—'
She glanced at the shapeless heap, and shuddered. Agravaine nodded.
'No wedding-bells for her,' he said, reverently.
'And I don't care. I did it to save you. But come! We are wasting time.
Come! I will help you to escape.'
A man who has been shut up for two days in a small room is seldom slow
off the mark when a chance presents itself of taking exercise.
Agravaine followed without a word, and together they crept down the
dark staircase until they had reached the main hall. From somewhere in
the distance came the rhythmic snores of scurvy knaves getting their
Softly Yvonne unbolted a small door, and, passing through it, Agravaine
found himself looking up at the stars, while the great walls of the
castle towered above him.
'Good-bye,' said Yvonne.
There was a pause. For the first time Agravaine found himself
examining the exact position of affairs. After his sojourn in the
guarded room, freedom looked very good to him. But freedom meant
parting from Yvonne.
He looked at the sky and he looked at the castle walls, and he took a
step back towards the door.
'I'm not so sure I want to go,' he said.
'Oh, fly! Fly, Sir Knight!' she cried.
'You don't understand,' said Agravaine. 'I don't want to seem to be
saying anything that might be interpreted as in the least derogatory to
your father in any way whatever, but without prejudice, surely he is
just a plain, ordinary brigand? I mean it's only a question of a
ransom? And I don't in the least object—'
'No, no, no.' Her voice trembled. 'He would ask no ransom.'
'Don't tell me he kidnaps people just as a hobby!'
'You don't understand. He—No, I cannot tell you. Fly!'
'What don't I understand?'
She was silent. Then she began to speak rapidly. 'Very well. I will
tell you. Listen. My father had six children, all daughters. We were
poor. We had to stay buried in this out-of-the-way spot. We saw no one.
It seemed impossible that any of us should ever marry. My father was in
despair. Then he said, "If we cannot get to town, the town must come to
us." So he sent my sister Yseult to Camelot to ask the king to let us
have a knight to protect us against a giant with three heads. There was
no giant, but she got the knight. It was Sir Sagramore. Perhaps you
Agravaine nodded. He began to see daylight.
'My sister Yseult was very beautiful. After the first day Sir Sagramore
forgot all about the giant, and seemed to want to do nothing else
except have Yseult show him how to play cat's cradle. They were married
two months later, and my father sent my sister Elaine to Camelot to
ask for a knight to protect us against a wild unicorn.'
'And who bit?' asked Agravaine, deeply interested.
'Sir Malibran of Devon. They were married within three weeks, and my
father—I can't go on. You understand now.'
'I understand the main idea,' said Agravaine. 'But in my case—'
'You were to marry me,' said Yvonne. Her voice was quiet and cold, but
she was quivering.
Agravaine was conscious of a dull, heavy weight pressing on his heart.
He had known his love was hopeless, but even hopelessness is the better
for being indefinite. He understood now.
'And you naturally want to get rid of me before it can happen,' he
said. 'I don't wonder. I'm not vain... Well, I'll go. I knew I had no
He turned. She stopped him with a sharp cry.
'What do you mean? You cannot wish to stay now? I am saving you.'
'Saving me! I have loved you since the moment you entered the Hall at
Camelot,' said Agravaine.
She drew in her breath.
'You—you love me!'
They looked at each other in the starlight. She held out her hands.
She drooped towards him, and he gathered her into his arms. For a
novice, he did it uncommonly well.
It was about six months later that Agravaine, having ridden into the
forest, called upon a Wise Man at his cell.
In those days almost anyone who was not a perfect bonehead could set up
as a Wise Man and get away with it. All you had to do was to live in a
forest and grow a white beard. This particular Wise Man, for a wonder,
had a certain amount of rude sagacity. He listened carefully to what
the knight had to say.
'It has puzzled me to such an extent,' said Agravaine, 'that I felt
that I must consult a specialist. You see me. Take a good look at me.
What do you think of my personal appearance? You needn't hesitate. It's
worse than that. I am the ugliest man in England.'
'Would you go as far as that?' said the Wise Man, politely.
'Farther. And everybody else thinks so. Everybody except my wife. She
tells me that I am a model of manly beauty. You know Lancelot? Well,
she says I have Lancelot whipped to a custard. What do you make of
that? And here's another thing. It is perfectly obvious to me that my
wife is one of the most beautiful creatures in existence. I have seen
them all, and I tell you that she stands alone. She is literally
marooned in Class A, all by herself. Yet she insists that she is plain.
What do you make of it?'
The Wise Man stroked his beard.
'My son,' he said, 'the matter is simple. True love takes no account of
'No?' said Agravaine.
'You two are affinities. Therefore, to you the outward aspect is nothing.
Put it like this. Love is a thingummybob who what-d'you-call-its.'
'I'm beginning to see,' said Agravaine.
'What I meant was this. Love is a wizard greater than Merlin. He plays
odd tricks with the eyesight.'
'Yes,' said Agravaine.
'Or, put it another way. Love is a sculptor greater than Praxiteles. He
takes an unsightly piece of clay and moulds it into a thing divine.'
'I get you,' said Agravaine.
The Wise Man began to warm to his work.
'Or shall we say—'
'I think I must be going,' said Agravaine. 'I promised my wife I would
be back early.'
'We might put it—' began the Wise Man perseveringly.
'I understand,' said Agravaine, hurriedly. 'I quite see now. Good-bye.'
The Wise Man sighed resignedly.
'Good-bye, Sir Knight,' he said. 'Good-bye. Pay at ye desk.'
And Agravaine rode on his way marvelling.