They walk further into the forest. Suddenly, their thoughts are interrupted by a sound of a different kind--the sound of heavy kissing followed by soft breathless conversation:
"Oh, my darling, I love you so much!"
"And I love you. But how much longer can we go on like this? Somehow they're bound to find out, and then what?"
"Nah! Nobody suspects anything. Anyway, what can we do?"
"Now's our chance!" whispers Walt, and our three friends emerge from behind the trees to the great surprise of the lovers.
"Give up this ill-fated love affair!"
"What th'--Oh, my God!, screams Guinevere. “You startled us!"
"Well, if it isn’t the king's soothsayers." observes Lancelot. “What a surprise!"
"We came to warn you that you must abandon this love affair before it’s too late."
"B-but that’s impossible--we’re in love!"
"Are you sure it's really love you feel and not just lust?” asks Daniel.
"You know, of course," adds Walt, "that what you are doing is a terrible sin. How could you, Lancelot, a man who has always prided himself on his virtue, allow yourself to fall into this sinful lifestyle?"
"But, since we really love each other, it can’t be that bad."
Lancelot’s words are echoed by Guinevere. "Yes, love is really all that matters, isn’t it?"
"But what of the love you once had for Arthur, your husband?"
"I don’t know. It’s grown cold, somehow."
"Well," sighs Walt, I can see there’s no use talking. There’s no hope for you, or for the world, if you persist in this; for, your so-called love will certainly destroy Camelot."
"Well," replies Lancelot, hesitantly, "Thanks for the warning. Perhaps we’ll think about it. And now, if you wouldn’t mind leaving us alone--"
"As you wish. But remember, there is great danger. We shall try to warn you again when it is nearest. For now, goodbye."
"I feel so frustrated. We couldn’t get anywhere with them.”
“I wonder if it will be that way in Eden."
"Nah, they’re already set in their sinful ways. In Eden, it’ll be the first time, so we should have an easier time of it."
"I hope you’re right. Say, let’s go back and try to contact home base again. Maybe they found the date, or at least a good idea of what it might be."
“Yeah, we found it alight!" John's voice comes droning over the communicator. "Of course, there are different viewpoints, but the predominate theory is that fall of Camelot began the night of August 16, 875 A.D.”
“That’s tonight!” observes Kerry.
“It all started,“ continues John, “when the queen, Guinevere, was captured in her room in the act of adultery with Lancelot, who escaped, only to try to rescue her, causing the final war."
“Oh, my goodness!” exclaims Walt. “We’d better go and try to warn them."
"I’m afraid it’s too late." observes Kerry.
"What do you mean?"
"Just take a look out that window."
Looking out, they see a group of knights in battle array, surrounding the capsule. "Oh no! It must be a contingent of Mordrid's men, sent to prevent us from interfering."
"Shucks! What can we do now?"
"We could try to blast them, but It’s probably too late anyway. I’ll bet at this very moment, another contingent of Mordrid's men is arresting the Queen for unfaithfulness."
"Then, this is the beginning of the end of Camelot, eh?"
"Sure as shootin'!"
"Well, we might as well be on our way. I’ll break out the new envelope of fuel. Kerry, bring the water and the brandy over here, and the measuring cup too. Daniel, stand by at the controls."
Meanwhile, the soldiers surrounding them are talking also:
"Wow! What kind of device is that?"
"Beats me. All I know is we’re suppose t' keep 'em surrounded. Fortunately, they didn’t hear us followin' 'em."
"Fortunately, we saw 'em leave the castle.”
"Well, now what do we do?"
"Just stand here and wait, like we were told, dummy!"
"Well, how long we gonna have t' wait here?"
"I don’t know--till we hear somethin' from Mordrid."
"Sure was lucky runnin' into him, eh? I mean things were getting’ t’ be real dull around here."
"Y' c'n say that again."
"Things were gettin' t' be real--hey, what th'--?!"
"Fer th' love o' Murd, would y' look at that!"
"I can’t believe it! It’s just hangin' there, goin' round and round in the' middle o' th'-- well, bless my soul, it’s disappeared. Did you see that?”
"Yeah! It was goin' round 'nd round and then it up and disappeared, all of a sudden like!"
"Well, either we’re all crazy, or that’s th' most special kind magic I ever saw."
"We’d better not say anything t’ anybody."
"But how are we gonna explain t’ Mordrid?"
"Maybe we won’t have to. If he succeeds in what he’s tryin' t' do, he’ll be so happy, he’ll forget about us."
"I sure hope you’re right."
"Well, let’s go. Nothin' else t’ do here."
And, inside the capsule:
"What a take-off!"
"Wow! I bet they were surprised!"
"But do you think their presence here means--I mean, maybe it isn't possible to change history."
"Nah! That was just a stroke of bad luck."
"Say, old King Arthur came pretty close to eliminating evil in the world, didn’t he?"
"Yes, but he failed to deal with evil at its source--sin in the heart of man."
"And that’s what we’re going to prevent."
"We’re sure going to try."
"I hope this new formula works."
"Yeah, I can’t wait to find out how far back we go now."
CHAPTER 11: CHRIST AND CRISIS
Again, the cylinder lands in a clump of trees beside a road.
Walt checks the indicator.
"Jerusalem: 33 A.D.?"
"That’s what it says."
"Ah," sighs Walt, remembering, "The time of the prophet, Jesus."
"I thought we were through with hearing that name."
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