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THE SIEGE OF ARRASCOUN
 FOR many days Guy wandered on painfully and
sorrowfully, sick with wounds, and sad at heart for the
loss of his friends. But at last his wounds were whole
again, and once more he came to cities where there were
tilts and tournaments; once more he fought and
conquered; and although he did not forget his friends,
the bitterness of sorrow went out of his heart.
One day news was brought to him that Duke Ledgwin of
Louvain was in trouble. Sadok, the Emperor's nephew,
had challenged Ledgwin to fight with him, but Ledgwin,
knowing himself to be far stronger than Sadok and
certain to beat him, refused, for he did not wish to
hurt the boy who was the Emperor's favourite. Sadok
 of Ledgwin, however, and angry because he would not
tilt with him. "Thou art a coward," he said.
"I am no coward," replied Ledgwin. "Thou art but a
foolish boy. I did only mean to save thee a beating,
but since thou wilt have it so, let us to it." So they
tilted together, and Sadok, being unskillful with his
weapons, Ledgwin killed him by mischance.
When the Emperor heard that Ledgwin had killed his
nephew he was very angry, and gathering a great army he
declared war against the Duke.
Now Ledgwin was shut up in his city of Arrascoun, sore
beset by the Emperor. When Guy heard of it, he
gathered all his soldiers together, and with fifty
knights he set out to bring what aid he could to his
One day, as he journeyed, he passed through a forest,
and as he went he came upon a pilgrim who sat by the
roadside. His clothes were old and worn, and he leaned
his head upon his hand, and
 looked like one who was hopeless and weary.
Guy, who was always sorry for any one in trouble,
reined in his horse, and spoke to the man. "Whence art
thou, pilgrim?" he asked.
"From Lombardy, replied the man, without looking up.
"What news from there?" asked Guy.
"What news, sir?" said the man. "Alas! I know none, I
care for none."
"Why art thou so sad, friend pilgrim?" asked Guy.
"Alas! Sir," replied the pilgrim, "it is now many a
long day since I lost my dear master and friend, who is
the best knight that ever there was. I roam the world
looking for him, and can neither find him nor hear any
tidings of him, and so I mourn him and am sad."
"Tell me, pilgrim, truly, what was the name of thy
master whom thou dost love so well; mayhap I have news
"He was called Guy of Warwick," said the man, looking
up. "A knight he was without
 blame"; and once more he let his head drop upon his
breast and sighed deeply.
"Guy of Warwick!" cried Guy surprised to hear his own
name. "Who then art thou?" and leaping from his horse
he stood beside the pilgrim.
"Men call me Heraud of Ardern," said the pilgrim.
"Heraud, Heraud!" cried Guy, tears of joy springing to
his eyes, "dost thou not know thy friend?"
"Guy," said Heraud in astonishment, "can it indeed be
thee?" Then, throwing their arms round each other,
they wept for joy.
Presently they sat down upon the grassy bank, and told
each other all that had happened since that sad day
when Guy had left Heraud with the Hermit, believing him
to be dead.
"After thou wert gone," said Heraud, "the kind Hermit
found out that I was not dead, but only sorely wounded.
So he carried me to his cave, and, taking off my
armour, washed my wounds and cared for them. All this
 knew not at the time, but he told me afterward. For
many days I lay knowing nothing, taking heed neither of
day nor night, of darkness nor sunshine; but at last
one morn I awoke to find the kind Hermit bending over
me. I knew not at first where I lay or who he might
be, and so weak was I that I could move neither hand
nor foot. But day by day the Hermit tended me, and
presently he told me all that had happened. Week after
week crept past, and slowly my strength returned, until
at length a day came when I said farewell to my kind
friend, and set forth to search for thee. And now,"said Heraud, rising as he finished his tale, "I will no
longer wear pilgrim"s weeds, for my pilgrimage is at an
end. I will once more put on armour and join thee in
thy quest, whatever it may be."
So he threw off his dull brown cloak, and Guy clad him
anew in shining armour, and together they rode towards
the city of Arrascoun.
Right glad was Ledgwin to see Guy and
 his fifty knights, and being so strengthened he decided
to sally out and attack the Almains, as the enemy were
called. So, on a sudden, the gates were thrown open
and Guy, Ledgwin, and all their knights and soldiers
poured out upon the foe.
Soon the air was full of the cries of war, and the
sound of ringing blows. The ground was strewn with
torn banners, splintered weapons and broken armour,
among which lay the dead and dying. Such slaughter
there was that of the thirty thousand men who had
gathered to besiege Arrascoun scarce three thousand
remained alive. From early morning until the shadows
of evening fell the battle lasted. Then Ledgwin,
calling his men together, took up the wounded, and
retired once more within the walls of his town.
Very wrathful was the Emperor at this defeat, and
quickly gathering another army he best Arrascoun more
closely than before. So strict a watch did he now keep
that no man could go into the town, no man could
 come out of it, and the Emperor hoped soon to starve
the brave garrison into submission.
But the people within the town had no lack of food.
They laughed at the Emperor, and Guy and Ledgwin came
to the walls and taunted the Almains.
"Ye will never win the town," they said; "ye can never
starve us into yielding, for we have food enough and to
spare. See, we will give some unto ye too, for we hear
that there is hunger within your camp."
Then, at the bidding of their masters, the soldiers
threw sacks of flour and carcases of bullocks over the
walls into the camp of the Almains.
"Speak if ye want more," cried Guy, "for we have store
enough to make ye all fat."
"We have fed ye; now why fight ye not?" cried Ledgwin.
"We have heard your tongues, but we cannot feel your
arms," laughed Guy. "Your words are indeed hot, but
your actions are
 cool enough. With your arms ye are slow, and with your
heels exceeding nimble."
But in spite of taunts and laughter, the Almains lay
around the town doing nothing, waiting until famine and
disease should fight for them.
At length Ledgwin and Guy, weary of idleness, made up
their minds to sally out once more to fight, come what
would. So again the gates were thrown wide open, and
the gallant knights pouring forth fell upon the
Almains. Fierce was the struggle. Guy and his men
fought as those who laughed death to scorn. Much blood
was shed; many brave men fell upon the field, others
fled away; and when at last night came, the Almains
were utterly defeated, the remnant fleeing from the
field, hotly pursued by their foes.
The victors then returned to Arrascoun, bearing with
them much spoil, and the banners and arms of the fallen
That night there was great rejoicing and feasting
within the town. Duke Ledgwin
 heaped honours and praise upon Guy. "For," said he,
"it is the fame of thy name and valour that has won the
But although Ledgwin had won the battle he was not
happy, for the Emperor had a beautiful sister called
Erneborough whom Ledgwin loved. Now he feared that he
would never see her more so long as the Emperor was
angry with him. The Emperor, too, was Ledgwin's
overlord, and very great and powerful, so that Ledgwin
could never hope to be safe or at peace until he had
made friends with the Emperor again. So he was sad.
"My friend," said Guy, seeing him look so sorrowful, "I
would rather that my tongue had won peace for thee than
my sword victory. Now let me go to the Emperor, and
perchance, though my tongue is but a soldier's and
ill-used to sue, he may listen to me."
"Go, friend," replied Ledgwin, "though, I fear me, thou
wilt speed but ill. Yet I charge thee, as thou dost
love me, say to
 the Lady Erneborough that although I have drawn my
sword against the Emperor, her brother, my heart is
hers, and shall be always until I die."
"Give me some token then," said Guy, "whereby she shall
know from whom I come."
Ledgwin hesitated for a moment, then putting his hand
into his doublet, he drew forth a ring and laid it in
Guy's hand. "This shall be thy token," he said.
Guy took the ring, and, mounting upon his horse, rode
to the court. There, lighting down, he bent his knee
before the Emperor and begged him to forgive Ledgwin,
and to take him into love and fellowship again. But
the Emperor looked darkly on Guy and would not listen
to him. Then all the other lords, barons, and knights
round also prayed him to forgive Ledgwin, but the
Emperor only looked more dark and angry.
Beside her brother Princess Erneborough sat, pale and
silent; but when Guy at last drew forth the ring and
gave it to her, her
 sad face shone suddenly with a smile, and a happy
colour came into her pale cheeks. Then she too bent to
the Emperor and whispered, "Forgive."
So at last the Emperor yielded. "My lords and barons,
hearken to me," he said. "For the love I bear unto ye,
and for the sake of Sir Guy, the courteous knight, I do
as ye desire. I put all wrath out of my heart. Duke
Ledgwin is forgiven."
Messengers were quickly sent to Ledgwin, and, as soon
as he heard the good news, he hurried to the court.
There he knelt to the Emperor and vowed to b e ever his
faithful friend and follower. But although he knelt to
the Emperor, it was at Erneborough that he looked, and
as she smiled down upon him, her eyes were like the
summer sky when the clouds have fled away.
Soon afterwards there was a great wedding. Ledgwin and
Erneborough were married. For days there was feasting
and merriment, games and play, but at last Guy came to
the Duke and told him that he must leave
 him, and once more set out upon adventures.
Ledgwin was very sad at the thought of parting from his
friend, and begged him to remain. But Guy said, "No,
in thy wars I have served thee. Now I leave thee
happy. But if ever again thou hast need of me, send,
and I shall come right hastily." Then, mounting upon
his horse, he rode away.