slowly, “but there’s a big ugly roach in your rushes.

time:2023-12-06 12:35:55source:Song and dance networkauthor:world

Early on the morrow came the Earl unto Goldilind, and she received him gladly, as one who had fashioned life anew for her. And when he had sat down by her, he spake and said: "Lady, thou cravedst of me yesterday two things; the first was freedom from the captivity of Greenharbour; and the second, life and liberty for the varlet that cherished thee in the wild-wood the other day. Now thy first asking grieved me, for that thou hast been tyrannously done by; and thy second I wondered at; but since I have seen the young man, I wonder the less; for he is both so goodly, and so mighty of body, and of speech bold and free, yet gentle and of all courtesy, that he is meet to be knight or earl, yea, or very king. Now, therefore, in both these matters I will well to do thy pleasure, and in one way it may be; and thou mayst then go forth from Greenharbour as free as a bird, and thy varlet's life may be given unto him, and mickle honour therewith. Art thou, then, willing to do after my rede and my commandment, so that both these good things may betide thee?"

slowly, “but there’s a big ugly roach in your rushes.

"Right willing am I," she said, "to be free and happy and to save the life of a fair youth and kind."

slowly, “but there’s a big ugly roach in your rushes.

"Then," said he, "there is one thing for thee to do: that this day thou wed this fair and kind youth, and let him lead thee forth from Greenharbour; and, belike, he will bring thee to no ill stead; for his friends are mightier than mayhappen thou deemest."

slowly, “but there’s a big ugly roach in your rushes.

She turned as red as blood at his word; she knit her brows, and her eyes flashed as she answered: "Is it seemly for a King's daughter to wed a nameless churl? And now I know thee, Lord Earl, what thou wouldst do; thou wouldst be King of Meadham and put thy master's daughter to the road." And she was exceeding wroth.

But he said, smiling somewhat: "Was it then seemly for the King's daughter to kneel for this man's life, and go near to swooning for joy when it was granted to her?"

"Yea," she said, "for I love him with all my body and soul; and I would have had him love me par amours, and then should I have been his mistress and he my servant; but now shall he be my master and I his servant." And still was she very wroth.

Quoth the Earl: "As to the matter of my being King of Meadham, that will I be, whatever befall, or die in the place else. So if thou wilt not do my rede, then must the varlet whom thou lovest die, and at Greenharbour must thou abide with Dame Elinor. There is no help for it."

She shrieked out at that word of his, and well nigh swooned, lying back in her chair: but presently fell a-weeping sorely. But the Earl said: "Hearken, my Lady, I am not without warrant to do this. Tell me, hast thou ever seen any fairer or doughtier than this youngling?"

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