In our previous two blogposts we went through the birth and the trek to Athens of Theseus, the king of Athens who was born in Troezen (Trizina), the region that hosts our Live-Bio project. We are now ready to enjoy our hero’s feats in the city of Athens!
Theseus encounters Medea, his evil step mother
Entering Athens was an overwhelming experience for the young village boy. After unknowingly crossing several red traffic lights he got desperate. “How the hell am I going to find the palace? When I become the king of this place I will introduce road signs in every corner.” As some of you can attest, he never followed through…
Tired of wandering around, Theseus swallowed his male pride and asked for instructions.
– Hello ma’am, which way to the palace please?
The woman he asked for directions was Medea, his father’s wife.
– What are you looking the palace for little boy? Medea asked trying to mask her distrust.
– Oh, nothing much, I am looking for my father, the mighty king of Athens.
Medea recognised her husband’s armour. “Strange thing,” she thought, “I haven’t seen this armour since this sleazy husband of mine went to Trizina for a business trip.”
– I’ll show you to the palace, sir, you will be treated like the illicit son of a king.
– What does illicit mean, ma’am?
– Clearly you never went to school little bastard, did you?
– I am sorry, my hearing has been poor since my last wrestling match. That idiot punched me in the ear. No respect for rules… Can you please repeat that?
– I said, follow me fine young man.
– Thank you ma’am, very kind of you.
Medea led Theseus to the palace, offered him lemonade, introduced him to the best barber in town and invited him to dinner.
– After you have cut your hair and trimmed your bristle, come to the palace’s roof top bar for an aperitif. You are over 18, right?
– Of course, ma’am. I had my birthday a few weeks ago and I blew all candles with a single blow!
Little he knew that Medea’s plan was to poison him, so that he would not contest the throne. Theseus happily showered, brushed his hair, applied a generous spraying of after shave and walked up to the roof top bar.
– Would you like a fine cocktail, sir? Medea’s faithful servant asked with a smirk.
– Do you serve craft beer?
– No sir, but I can assure you that you will enjoy this cocktail.
– My mom does not allow me to drink hard liquor, grab me a beer and drink the cocktail yourself, I will not tell anyone you had it.
Theseus meets his father
When the king of Athens walked in, everyone bowed; everyone, but Theseus. It was not due to bad manners, the armour was too tight on his back. His father immediately recognised the armour and hugged his estranged son.
– We’ll exceed the blogpost’s word limit, can we stop this here?
– How is your mother?
– She’s great, but asked me to remind you of the alimony instalments, can you please take care of the last two?
It was not only Medea who was unimpressed by the arrival of the throne heir. Theseus’ uncle, Pallas, had two sons, the Pallantides. In the absence of a direct successor, his children would be crowned kings. His arrival had just messed everything up.
– Dear nephew, would you like to have a bonding moment with your cousins?
– I’d love to, where can I meet them?
– They are waiting for you in that dark alley behind the hill. No need to carry a weapon with you, it is totally safe down there.
If Theseus were to have been killed by the Pallantides, our story would have ended here. You can imagine who killed whom.
Having cleared all the thugs on his way and the palace of his foes, Theseus started feeling bored. Videogames had not been invented by the Greeks yet and state TV only played repetitive paeans about the king. What would come next?
Wait until our next blogpost, where we will discuss Theseus’ trip to Crete and the killing of the Minotaur. In addition to our usual, entertaining story telling, in our next blogpost we will also touch on the social process of mythological story making. We are sure you will enjoy it!