HOW GUY WENT HOME, AND HOW HE SET FORTH AGAIN
 After many adventures, Guy at last resolved to go home
again. So, laden with riches, and followed by a great
train of knights and servants, he at length reached
Warwick. The people received him with much joy. The
Earl welcomed him as a son, every one was glad, and
Phyllis most glad of all. But Guy had one sorrow. His
own father and mother were dead, and that grieved him
sorely. But Phyllis comforted him, and in the joy of
being with her once more he forgot all else.
Many long hours Phyllis and Guy sat together talking,
telling each other of all that had happened in the
years which had passed since Guy rode away to seek
adventures. Phyllis was never weary of
listen-  ing to these adventures, and of wondering over Guy's
marvelous deeds. And so, with pleasant talk and
laughter, the summer days slipped past.
At last one day the Earl called Phyllis to him.
"Daughter," he said, "it is now time that thou shouldst
marry. Lords, knights and nobles have come to ask thy
hand, but thou has refused them all. Now I grow old,
and I would fain see thy husband before I die. Choose
now whom thou wilt have."
"Father," replied Phyllis, looking down, "give me three
days. Then will I choose."
I wonder why she wanted three days, for she knew quite
well whom she would marry. But you see Phyllis was a
beautiful lady, and beautiful ladies do many things
which are hard to understand.
When the third day came, the Earl called his daughter
again. "Thy will, daughter, tell it me," he said.
"Sir," she said, blushing and smiling, "my will I tell
thee blithely. There is thine own knight Guy. In the
whole world is there
 never a better man. Him I will marry, and none other."
"Daughter," replied the Earl, greatly pleased, "thou
dost choose well. I will speak to Sir Guy, and if he
be willing, I shall be right glad."
Then Phyllis went away laughing softly, for she knew
well that Guy would marry her.
So there was a great and splendid wedding. Dukes,
earls, and knights came to it with many fair and lovely
ladies; but Phyllis was the fairest of them all, and
not a knight or lord was so handsome as Sir Guy. For
fifteen days the feasting and merriment lasted. Then
all the guests went away full of wonderment at the
splendour they had seen.
For some time Guy and Phyllis lived happily together.
Then one sad day Earl Rohand died. He left all his
land and vast wealth to Guy, and the King made him Earl
of Warwick, so he became a great and powerful lord as
well as a gallant knight.
 One day Guy had been out hunting, and, returning in the
evening, he climbed to the high turret of his castle,
and looked out over his broad lands. There field, and
hill, and valley, river and forest, lay before him, all
red in the evening sunshine, and as far as the eye
could reach it was all his own—tower and town, cattle,
homestead, all were his.
Guy leaned upon the stone rampart deep in thought. The
red sun went down, the sky grew dark, and one by one
the twinkling stars shone out. Still Guy stood there
thinking. So quiet it was, so peaceful, and unlike the
life he had been used to lead, that it seemed almost a
Then, as in a dream within a dream, his past life all
came back to him. He heard the clatter and jingle of
horse and armour, the ring of sword on shield, the
cries of rage, of pain, of exultation. He saw the
field covered with splintered spears, broken armour,
bloodstained, torn banners; he saw the fallen foe,
wounds and death. Then it seemed as if he woke, and
looking out again
 over the peaceful country, he remembered that that was
all past for him, and that life now flowed stilly on in
love and gentleness. Suddenly he fell upon his knees.
"O God," he cried, "I thank Thee that Thou has brought
me to such honour, peace, and love."
In those far-off days, when the world was not so old,
men were more simple, and God seemed nearer to them
than now. But Guy in all his life had never thought of
God. He had loved Phyllis only, and had done great
deed that he might bring honour and fame to her. He
had fought many battles, he had killed many men, but
never once had he thought of the pain and trouble he
had brought on others, but only of the glory to
himself. He had indeed nearly always fought for the
weak against the strong, but that was because it
brought him greater glory. Now, kneeling upon the cold
stone, with his face pressed into his hands, it seemed
to him as if his whole past life had been wicked. "I
have done everything for the love of a beautiful face,"he moaned. "I
 have never done one action because it was right."
"Alas, he said, that I was born,
Body and soul I am forlorn,
Of bliss I am all bare;
For never in all my life before
For Him the crown of thorn that bore
Good deed did I ne QO() ?>er;
But war and woe have I wrought,
And many a man to ground have brought,
That rues me now full sore."
So he knelt and mourned. All around it was still, and
over his head was the deep blue sky with its twinkling
stars. There was none to hear or pity his misery.
Then at last he stood up. Baring his head he threw his
sword. Holding it in both hands high above him, he
turned his face up to the sky. "Lord God," he cried,
"here is my sword. It is Thine for ever. I swear here
and now that it shall never again be drawn save in a
good cause. Never again shall I shed blood for the
sake of glory only."
 As Guy stood there, holding out this sword, Phyllis
came softly up the stone steps. When she reached the
top, and saw his pale face turned up to the sky, and
his drawn sword held out, she stood still, afraid.
There was silence for a few minutes, then Guy looked
down and saw her standing there.
What is it?" whispered Phyllis, more afraid than ever
at the strange look in Guy's eyes.
Then, taking her by the hand, Guy told Phyllis all his
thoughts. "For many years, he said, "I have never
ceased from wars and from shedding man"s blood. Surely
God must be angry with me. So I have vowed never again
to draw sword except in a just cause. And now I will
put off my fine clothes, my jewels, and my chains of
gold, and, dressed in pilgrim garments, I will journey
barefoot to the Holy Land, and there, and the Sepulchre
of our Lord, do penance for my sins."
When Phyllis heard these words she sat
 quite still. She had been happy when she came up on
the stone stair. It was dark, but she was not afraid,
for Guy, she knew, was at the top, and she had run
lightly up, singing as she came. Now she was utterly
miserable. All life seemed dark. She shivered at the
thought that she would have to go up and down these
stairs, and through all the great empty rooms, alone,
and than, however she might wander and search, there
would be no Guy anywhere. Then, leaning her head
against his shoulder, she let the hot tears chase each
other down her white cheeks.
Guy tried to comfort her, but she would not be
comforted. Do not go away," she moaned. "Oh! Stay
with me, stay with me. We will give all our money to
the poor; we will guild great churches and monasteries.
If thou hast done anything wicked that will make up for
it, only do not go away."
Buy Guy shook his head. "I must go," he said, "there
is no other way,"
So the great Earl of Warwick put off
 his fine clothes and dressed himself in pilgrim robes.
Of all his jewels and gold he took only a ring which
Phyllis had given him. Then with a staff in his hand
he set out on his long journey. Slowly, sadly, with
bent head he walked away, leaving behind him his lovely
wife, whom he had fought for and loved these many long
years. He would not look back—not once—lest his
heart should fail him, and he should return.
And Phyllis, left alone in her beautiful castle, sobbed
as if her heart would break.
Hundreds of additional titles available for
online reading when you join Gateway to the Classics