"'In the third trial a man came to [Sir Bors] dressed as a priest, and told him that there was a lady in a castle nearby who was doomed to death unless Bors made love to her. This supposed priest pointed out that he had already sacrificed the life of his own brother [i.e., the speaker, Sir Lionel - it's a long story], and that if he did not sin with the new lady now, he would have a second life on his conscience...
"'Well, the lady appeared in the castle...and confirmed the story. She said that there was a magic which would make her die for love, unless my brother was good to her. Bors now realized that he must either commit mortal sin and save the lady, or refuse to commit it and let her die. He told me afterwards that he remembered some bits out of the penny catechism, and a sermon which was once given when there was a mission at Camelot. He decided that he was not responsible for the lady's actions, while he was responsible for his own. So he refused the lady.'
"'That was not the end of it. The lady was dazzlingly beautiful, and she climbed to the highest keep of her castle, with twelve lovely gentlewomen, and she said that if Bors would not stop being so pure, they would all jump off together. She said she would force them to do so. She said that he only had to have one night with her - and why need it not be fun? - for the gentlewomen to be saved. All twelve of them shouted out to Bors, and begged him for mercy, and wept for dole.
"'I can tell you my brother was in a quandary. The poor things were so frightened and so pretty, and he only had to stop being obstinate to save their lives.'
"'What did he do?'
"'He let them jump.'
"'Shame!' cried the Queen..."
"'I suppose the moral is,' said Arthur, 'that you must not commit mortal sin, even if twelve lives depend upon it. Dogmatically speaking, I believe that is sound.'
"'I don't know what the dogma is, but I know it nearly turned my brother's hair grey...'"