Book II in Mary Macleod's retelling of Edmund Spencer's epic poem in novella format.
ARCHIMAGO, the wicked magician (whose other name you may remember was Hypocrisy,) who had worked such mischief to Una and the Red Cross Knight, was very angry when he found that in the end all his evil wiles were defeated, and that the Knight and the lady were happily betrothed. He would willingly have brought more trouble on them, but he was powerless to do any harm to Una, for she was now safely restored to her own kingdom, and living in the care of her father and mother. He therefore directed all his spite against the Knight, who had once more to set forth on his adventures, as he had promised Queen Gloriana to serve her faithfully for six years. At the end of that time he hoped to return and marry Una, and the King, her father, had made him heir to the throne.
It happened, one day, that the enchanter saw marching to meet him a noble knight. The stranger was clad in shining armour and rode a splendid war-horse; his bearing was very stately, and his face, although calm and beautiful, was so stern and noble that all his friends loved him and his foes feared him. He was one of the chief knights of Queen Gloriana's court, a man of great honour and power in his native land. His name was Sir Guyon. Just as the Red Cross Knight was known as the Champion of Holiness, so Sir Guyon was known as the Knight of Temperance.
Stopping Sir Guyon, this time he had a fresh story to tell, which, of course, was perfectly false. He implored Sir Guyon to come to the help of a beautiful maiden, cruelly ill-treated by a rough knight, who had cut off her golden locks, and threatened to kill her with his sharp sword.
"What!" cried Sir Guyon, his gentle nature roused to indignation, "is the man still alive who could do such a deed?"
"He is alive, and boasts of it," said wicked Hypocrisy. "Nor has any other knight yet punished him for it."
"Take me to him at once," said Sir Guyon.
"That I can easily do," said Archimago. "I will show you where he is," and he hurried off in high glee, because he thought that at last he had found a way of revenging himself on the Red Cross Knight, and so begins the adventures of Sir Guyon.