Odysseus lives in Ithaca with his wife, Penelope. He is the King. Penelope is expecting their first sons. The author says " Eleven! Almost eleven! he was only a baby when I left Ithaca (McCaughrean 3)".
Shortly after Penelope gives birth to Telemachus, Odysseus is asked by Menelaus (king of Sparta) to join him in the fight against Trojans. The author says " Sir!' cried Odysseus, struggling to keep the terror out of his voice ( McCaughrean 14)".
He doesn't want to go to war because he would miss his sons childhood and miss his family. The author says " We shall saved,' siad Odysseus loudly and calmly , 'and gods are to be thanked for it'.(McCaughrean 5)