Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Chapter 93

How Amadis and Agrajes and all the knights of high estate that were with him went to see and console Oriana and the ladies with her, and what happened.

[Brooch depicting two lovers enclosed in a love-garden fence from the collection of the treasures of the Order of the Golden Fleece at Kaiserliche Schatzkammer Museum in Vienna.]
As the knights arrived to see Oriana, they greeted her with great reverence and obedience, and then all the other ladies. She received them with good will, as one who was of great noble birth and upbringing. Amadis told Sir Cuadragante and Brian of Monjaste to go to Oriana, and he went to Mabilia, and Agrajes to where Olinda and other ladies were, and Sir Florestan to Queen Sardamira, and Sir Bruneo and Angriote to Grasinda, for they greatly loved and esteemed her, and the other knights to other ladies and damsels, each to the one who most pleased him and from whom he hoped to receive the most honor and favor. And so they were all speaking with great pleasure about the things they most enjoyed.

Then Mabilia took her cousin Amadis by the hand and went to one end of the hall and said so that everyone could hear:

“My lord, have Gandalin called so that in your presence I may tell him what to say to my aunt the Queen and my cousin Melicia, and ye can order him to do that since on your command he is going to see King Perion of Gaul.”

When Oriana heard this, she said:

“Well, I would also like him to take my message to the Queen and her daughter along with yours.”

Amadis had Gandalin called, who was in the garden waiting with the other squires, for he knew well that they were going to call him. When he came in, he went to the end of the hall where Amadis and Mabilia were, and they spoke with him for a while. And Mabilia said to Oriana:

“My lady, I have finished with Gandalin, if ye wish to say something to him.”

Oriana turned to Queen Sardamira and told her:

“My lady, take her with you to Sir Cuadragante while I speak to that squire.”

And taking Sir Brian of Monjaste by the hand, she went to where Mabilia was. And when she arrived, Sir Brian of Monjaste told her, as one who was very entertaining and prudent in all things regarding chivalry:

“Since I have been chosen to be the ambassador to your father, I do not want to be present at the embassy of damsels, for I fear, since ye ladies are full of trickery and humor in everything ye to do, ye will put me in a situation that requires more courtesy than what those knights have ordered me to say.”

Oriana told him as she laughed very beautifully:

“My lord Sir Brian, that is why I have brought you here with me so that seeing us might somewhat temper your anger with my father, but I am afraid that your heart is not so easily subject or fond of women’s things, and in no way might they deflect or stand in the way of your intentions.”

That very beautiful Princess said this in jest with so much good grace it was a wonder, because Sir Brian, although he was a young and very handsome man, was more given to weapons and dealing with knights than to submit or involve himself with any woman, although in any matter involving their protection and aid, he would place himself in every confrontation and danger so they might achieve what was their right. He loved all women and all women loved him, but he loved no woman in particular.

Sir Brian told her:

“My lady, for that reason I wish to remove myself from your presence and flattery so that I do not lose in a short period of time when I won at such length.”

And so as they were all laughing, he left Oriana and went to where Grasinda was, who very much wanted to meet him because of what she had heard about him.

When Amadis found himself before his lady, whom he so much loved and had not seen for such a long time, not counting their encounter at sea because it had occurred during such a great commotion and amid so many people, as the third book of this story has told, all his flesh and his heart trembled with pleasure at her great beauty and because she looked happier than he had hoped to find her. He was so lost that he could not speak or say a thing, and Oriana, whose eyes never left him, immediately understood what was happening and came to him, took him by the hands underneath his cloak, and squeezed them as a sign of great love as if she had embraced him, and she told him:

“My truly beloved above all the others in the world, although my fate has brought me the thing that I desired most in the world, which is to be within your power where never my eyes as well as my heart could be separated from you, my great misfortune has wished it to be in such a manner that now more than ever I am required to avoid conversation with you because this situation, which will be so notorious and well known throughout the world, must be presented to everyone in keeping with the reputation that the grandeur of my estate and virtue that I am obliged to maintain.

“It may seem that ye, my beloved friend, more by following the nobility that ye always sought in helping those in trouble who need rescue, always upholding righteousness and justice, than for any other cause, ye were moved to undertake such a great and important enterprise as this one seems to be. If the main cause, which is our love, were to become publicly known, then all your men as well as all your opponents would judge things differently. For that reason it is necessary that what with great anguish and effort we have kept hidden until now, from here on we must maintain, even if it requires greater travail.

“As a solace for that let us consider our freedom and do that which might satisfy the will of our desires whenever it seems most agreeable to us, but may that be when we can find no other solution. And so let us continue until God is pleased to bring us the end that we wish.”

Amadis told her:

“Oh, my lady, by God no reason or excuse needs to be given for being in your service, because I was born in this world for no other reason than to be yours and to serve you while this body has a soul. For me there is no other wish or good fortune except to follow whatever your will may be. And, my lady, what I wish as a reward for my mortal sufferings and desires is nothing other than to have it always in your mind to order me in whatever way I may serve you, for this would be a great part of the remedy and rest that my impassioned heart needs.”

And as Amadis said that, Oriana was watching him, and she saw tears fall from his eyes until his entire face was wet, and she told him:

“My good friend, what ye tell me is the same as what I hold, and it is not new to me to believe that ye follow my will in everything, just as I would wish to content and satisfy yours, which the Lord, from whom nothing is hidden, knows. But, as I said, it must be that for now we will suffer. And while He is resolving it, if ye wish my love with the affection that ye always have, I ask you to set aside anxiety and fatigue from your heart, for now it cannot be long before in some way or another our secret becomes known, and at peace or at war we shall be together in the way that for so long we have desired.

“And since we have been speaking for a long while, I wish to return to those other noble knights so there are no suspicions. And my lord, wipe those tears from your eyes as secretly as ye may and remain with Mabilia, for she will tell ye something that ye do not know, my lord, and that until now I have not had the opportunity to tell you, and it will give your heart great pleasure and joy.”

Then she had Sir Cuadragante and Brian of Monjaste called, and with them she returned to where she had been previously. Amadis remained with Mabilia, and she told him everything about Esplandian, how he was the son of Amadis and Oriana, and everything that had happened during his birth and his upbringing, how the damsel of Denmark and her brother Durin had been bringing him to be raised in Miraflores and they lost him, and the lioness took him, and how he was brought up in a hermitage. She recounted all this extensively, and nothing was left out, as the third part of this great story has told. Amadis could not have been happier to hear this, and for a long time he could not speak, and after the great upsetting joy that his heart felt had passed, he told her:

“My lady and my good cousin, know that when I was with the very noble lady Grasinda, and the knights Angriote de Estravaus and Sir Bruneo arrived, it happened that Angriote told me everything about Esplandian, but he did not know whose son he was. Immediately I remembered the letter that ye sent with my foster father Gandales to this island in which ye told me that my lineage had increased, and I thought, given when it was that ye had written me and what it said, and how no one knew where or whose son that young nobleman was, he might be the son of myself and Oriana, but this was a mere suspicion and not at all a certainty.

“But now that I know it for sure, ye may believe, my lady and beloved cousin, that I am more happy about that than if I had been made lord of half the world. And I do not say this because that young man is so extraordinary but because he is the son of such a mother whom God has made noteworthy and unique both in her beauty and in all the other virtues that a good lady ought to have above all other ladies who were born into this world, and so He would wish that all things that proceed from her would be extraordinarily sweet and bitterness be relegated to others, which through experience I have tested and known and may say is true.

“Oh, my lady cousin, if I could recount for you the anguish and great distress that during this time when ye did not see me, my miserable heart has suffered, then without a doubt ye could believe that in comparison to them, all the dangers and confrontations that in those foreign lands I experienced could not be judged as anything more than the fear and frights of dreams, or something that holds no effect or truth. And God, wishing to have pity on me, brought me a time when I could save her from a great confrontation and myself from the most painful death that any knight has ever died of, and from where my heart until now never found any rest or repose. It is now secure, because from this nothing else can be achieved except to win her with the full satisfaction of both our desires or to lose our lives and with that all temporal things will come to an end.

“Since my good fortune has wished to solve and relieve my fatigue, it is very right that we all work to remedy hers, as someone who has never seen herself in such a situation or could have known what would befall her, for I believe that her anxiety can only be very great. And ye, my lady, who in the past has been the greatest support for her life, now counsel her and encourage her, explaining to her that neither before God nor her father is she responsible for what happened, and no person in the world can rightly blame her.

“If she fears the great power of her father and of the Emperor of Rome, my lady, ye may tell her that there are so many of us in her service with such skills that if I did not fear her anger, I would seek them out in their own kingdoms. As soon as Sir Cuadragante and Sir Brian of Monjaste return from their trip to see her father, we will find out if he wishes peace or if we will have war, as she will be able to see. And meanwhile always tell me of whatever might be most in her service and pleasure, so that her will may be fulfilled.”

Mabilia told him:

“My lord, if I wished to tell you what I have gone through after ye left this land to console and remedy her anguish and pain, especially after the Romans came to my father’s court, it would be a never-ending story. And for that reason, because ye are fully aware of the great love she has for you, I will leave off speaking any more of it. And my lord, what ye would have me do, I always do, although her discretion has increased so much that both in things she has known from birth according to the condition and weakness of women, and in all the other things that are new and strange to us, she understands and recognizes with the spirit and heart that her royal estate requires, although not regarding you, which makes her lose all her senses. In everything else she has enough discretion to console everyone in the world. And if anything would give her pleasure, ye will always be advised by me.”

With that they finished speaking and returned to where Oriana was. Gandalin bid them farewell and went out to sea to go to Gaul, which shall be told of in its proper time. After these lords had spent a long time with the Princess Oriana and the ladies who were with her, speaking of many things of great pleasure and being very encouraging, they bid farewell to them and returned to their lodgings, where they enjoyed everything necessary in great quantity, and where they could see all the marvels of that island, and nothing like them could be found in any other part of the world. These marvels had been created and designed by the great and wise Apolidon, who placed them there when he was lord of the island.

But now the story shall cease to speak of that in order to tell about King Lisuarte, who knew nothing of all this.


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