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Free Study Guide-The Once and Future King-T.H. White-Free Book Summary
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Chapter 10

Summary and Notes

Kay and Wart and now the best of friends, as boys (or knights) will be after a fight, and they set off into the forest. The boys are not sure how to find their adventure, and they wander along, eventually happening upon a tiny old man chopping wood. They ask the old man for help finding their adventure, and he does not respond, so the boys continue on their way.

After some time, they discover a giant man asleep in a clearing. The man is dressed in camouflage clothing and has a dog with him. The man awakes and introduces himself as Little John. The boys recognize his name and that he is a friend of Robin Hoodís, who is a legendary figure to the youngsters. It turns out that his name is not Robin Hood, but Robin Wood, and Little John leads them to the hero.

Robin is lying under a tree singing with his wife Marian; an idyllic scene. Robin is a friendly, energetic young man, and he tests the boysí prowess by asking them to shoot arrows at distant targets; Robin is pleased with their abilities.

Robin is about to go on a mission, and although Marian expresses reservations about letting the boys accompany them, Robin tells them what is to happen. There is a bad fairy named Morgan le Fay. The fairies are descendents of the original people who inhabitant the land that is now England. They donít look quite human; they have magical powers, and they go by a variety of names including: the Old One, the Oldest of All and the Gaels. They are cold-blooded, ubiquitous, vengeful, and Morgan is their queen. Morgan has kidnapped one of Robinís men, and Dog Boy from Ectorís castle, and Robin means to release them.

This chapter introduces the faction that will be the key to Arthurís undoing: the Old Ones, or the Orkney faction. The reader understands that these fairies are angry because of the loss of their land, and that they have magical power and are thus a formidable force. The author furthermore continues to make the legendary and fictitious real for the reader; Robin Hood (Wood) is a flesh and blood man who fights important battles for Right.

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