The Odyssey: The Challenge
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After Penelope had been summoned by the suitors to pick one of them to marry she declares a challenge that only one man could fulfill. The Challenge is whoever can string Odysseus' bow and arrow and shoot the arrow through 12 ax-handle sockets just as Odysseus used to do, than I will marry you. Now you can imagine the suitors were not too happy about that.
As each suitor stepped up to take on the challenge one by one they failed terribley. None of them could even string the arrow to bow let alone shoot the arrow. Therefore Penelope would not be marrying anyone of these suitors, However, a glimmer or spark of hope had quickly arisen.
The Old Beggar without hesitation asked for a chance to take on the challenge head first. After protesting from the suitors to not allow the old beggar to do so. Penelope and Telemachus soon came to the conclusion of letting the old beggar try.
As the old beggar (Odysseus) went to take the bow and the arrow he took his time. Turning the bow, tapping it, every inch, making sure it was done to perfection. The suitors soon exclaimed "A bow lover", "May his fortune grow an inch for every inch he bends it". So skilled in every aspect of weaponry this was routine for Odysseus.
Effortlessly Odysseus in one motion strung the bow, and slid his hand down the cord and plucked it. The hall than fell to silence. Zeus than thundered overhead, one loud crack for a sign. Odysseus than picked up one of the arrows and put it to his quiver and cord. He than pulled the arrow back and aimed it./ Only to release it whistling through every socket ring (didn't even graze one of the rings).
As the suitors were in absolute shock in what they had just seen, Odysseus told Telemachus"The stranger you welcomed in your hall has not disgraced you. I did not miss, neither did I take all day stringing my bow. My hand and eye are sound, not so contemptible the young men say. The hour has come to cook their lordships' mutton- supper by daylight. Other amusements later, with song and harping adorn a feast." Telemachus dropped his eyes, nodded.The prince strapped his sword near his father nad was ready for battle.
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