Jiggety Jog

Though the morning star fully graced the sky, Dawn still waited beneath the horizon for pers appointed hour. Telemakhe stumbled out of bed and began sorting through the clothes next to her hammock.

Peisistratos blinked his eyes and stared her direction. "Hey," he said, "What are you up to?"

Telemakhe started pulling on her underwear. "I only came to find news of my mother," she said, "I'm going to have to trust that what Menelaus has said is true. Unfortunately, I have been reminded that the suitors could stir up some severe trouble if I don't return home soon."

"But do you really have to start your return this very minute? It's only five in the morning," said Peisistratos.

While tucking her shirt into her trousers Telemakhe wandered over to Peisistratos and pecked him on the forehead. "I'm sorry, I just have this sense of urgency. Believe me, I would love to spend more time here and with you."

"Okay, well give me a chance to get dressed too. You'll need me to drive you to Pylos where your ship will have returned by now. I'd also give your hosts a chance to see you off," said Peisistratos while rousing himself. He too gathered his clothes together and began putting them on. In a few minutes they were dressed and out seeing to the horses. When a few lights could be seen moving through the palace, Telemakhe returned.

Helen and Menelaus were now up preparing for that day's continuing wedding festivities. Telemakhe met them in the hall on the way to the kitchen. "Kind Madam and Sir, I fear I must return home. For as much as I appreciate your lavish care, I am concerned about the state of Ithaka."

"Telemakhe, dear, don't let us hold you back if you feel the need to go home," said Menelaus, "Hosts are equally remiss in their duties if they hang on to a guest too long, as sending them immediately packing. But let us fix you a proper breakfast to see you off and while you are eating, we shall see to it that your chariot is filled with your gifts from us." Menelaus then called his man Eteoneus to see that a fire was started for broiling mutton, and to then help pack chalice and other fine items into a wicker carrier.

Helen motioned for Telemakhe to follow her to her rooms. Out of a chest she pulled a long gown. Rose, silver and gold it shimmered like a star. The bodice was intricately embroidered with vines and leaves. Its long flowing sleeves were of a translucent material that nearly touched the ground. "My marriage was arranged," said Helen, "But you, as Odysseus' daughter have been given a choice. You may choose to marry or not to marry; you may choose to whom you marry. Your mother married your father purely out of love. It wasn't just romantic love, it was the love of two friends and equals. That's very rare in this era. Should you find someone that you love in the same way, I want you to have this dress for the ceremonies. Your mother gave me a second chance at real love and for that I will always be grateful."

Telemakhe hugged Helen on the spot. "Thank you so much. My mother must be pretty special if she has friends like you."

All too soon they were eating and finishing breakfast. Menelaus and Helen then followed Telemakhe and Peisistratos out to their chariot. Menelaus was handed a golden cup by Eteoneus and poured out libations on the behalf of his young guests. "Farewell you two, may you live days of fulfilled promise."

Telemakhe replied, "I only wish I could tell my mother of your open-heartedness and generosity to me."

"Truly my girl, you will. In time you will," said Menelaus.

Peisistratos set the horses on a gentle trot to his home in Pylos.

Pilose at Pylos.

Copyright © 1998 Katherine Phelps