Study Guide

The Once and Future King Book 3, Chapter 18

By T.H. White

Book 3, Chapter 18

  • After a nice night spent with Guenever, Lancelot is thinking about convincing Guenever to just tell Arthur and make a clean break.
  • But when he sees Guenever the next morning, she's obviously quite angry with him.
  • Guenever proceeds to kick Lancelot and Elaine out, because she apparently sent for him the previous night and he did not show up.
  • And the truth comes out: Brisen (Elaine's maid) brought Lancelot to Elaine during the night, and since it was in the dark, Lance thought it was Guenever. Fooled again. Maybe Lancelot should get some glasses or insist upon some stronger lighting in these situations.
  • When Lancelot won't leave, Guenever tries to push him out the door. She screams at him to take his horrible, ugly face away and just leave.
  • Strangely, Lancelot yells "Galahad!" at the floor, and says "Arthur," and then screams loudly and jumps out of the window. What a dramatic (not to mention really weird) exit.
  • Elaine informs Guen that her angry behavior has driven Lancelot right out of his wits.
  • Getting a bit angry, Elaine finally shows a bit of backbone. She tells Guenever that she (Guen) has a husband and a home, but Elaine has nothing. Why can't she just let her have Lancelot?
  • Before Elaine leaves, Guenever begs her not to tell anyone about this situation—Lancelot could be killed if people find out.
  • She also tells Guenever that she (the Queen) has won Lancelot, but she has also broken him. So, now what's she going to do to him next?
  • Guenever has a good, long, loud cry.

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