The sound of a blaring ram’s horn tore across Sparta before it finally made its way to the king’s ears.
“What?” the king asked.
Leda stirred. “Could it be?”
The gold plated doors to the throne room opened to reveal a rather stern looking muscle bound, long haired warrior. He entered in the company six other warriors, three on each side.
Their uniforms consisted of little more than leather thongs and flowing capes.
A frazzled Tyndarecus sprang to his feet. “Oh, thank the gods, ’tis Audax, General of the Mighty Spartan Army. What news do you bring?”
The Spartans marched in a stoic manner until they reached the throne. Then, they shouted a very guttural “oohrah” before falling to their knees before the king.
“My good king,” Audax said. “My good queen. Castor and Pollux approach the port in their ship.”
“And? Tyndarecus asked.
“Umm,” the general said. “The wind is in their sails and their pace is steady?”
The king slapped his forehead. “For the love of Hera’s tucas, man! Is Helen with them?”
“Oh!” Audax said. “Yes! Indeed she is. I spotted the princess standing on deck.”
“Not trying to tell you how to do your job, general,” Tyndarecus said. “But you might have led off with that.”
The warriors arose. “On your word, we shall escort you to the port, your highness.”
Leda stood up. “I must fetch our niece.”
“Yes,” a relieved Tyndarecus said. “Collect dear Penelope so that our family will finally be together again.”
Three Spartans left the throne room with the Queen.
Meanwhile, the king, Audax, and the other three warriors departed.
As the party reached the hustle and bustle of the city, the king couldn’t help but notice the skimpy attire the warriors were wearing.
“Yes, my liege?”
“Is it me or have the uniforms of the Mighty Spartan Army grown absurdly scant?”
“’Tis not you, my king,” Audax said. “A reduction in clothing is one of many changes I have made as of late to give the Mighty Spartan Army an edge over all challengers.”
“I never thought one could could go wrong with a good tunic,” Tyndarecus said.
“All due respect, my king,” Audax replied. “But tunics are bulky and get in the way. Leather thongs allow for much freer movement.”
“And the capes?” Tyndarecus inquired.
“Oh the capes are just badass,” Audax said. “When our enemies spy the Mighty Spartan Army rolling up on them, they’ll be all like, ‘Damn, those bad ass Spartan muthafuckas be wearin’ the shit out of them capes!’”
“I see,” the king said. “And what other changes have you made?”
A miserable wretch covered in boils hobbled up to the party on his cane with a live chicken tucked under his arm.
“Huzzah!” the wretch said. “’Tis Good King Tyndarecus! May the gods smile upon you, your majesty!”
“Step aside, peasant!” Audax said as he knocked the wretch over with his pinky finger and kept walking.
“A bit harsh, weren’t you?” the king asked.
“I don’t know where that lowly dog has been, my king,” Audax said. “He coughs on you, you get sick and before you know it I’m slitting my own throat to atone for my failure to protect the man the gods have selected to rule over Sparta. Now where was I?”
“The changes,” the king said.
“Ah yes,” Audax said. “I’ve given the men a robust schedule. Up before dawn for swordplay practice, followed by an afternoon of rubbing scented oils and lotions into one another’s rippling muscles, followed by an evening of slippery wrestling until we fall asleep.”
“That seems rather uh, homoerotic,” the king said. “Not that I’m judging.”
“Scented oils and lotions are good for the muscles, your highness,” Audax said. “It brings the gallons upon gallons of testosterone coursing through our veins to the surface and makes us stronger. I swear it has nothing to do with us enjoying putting our greasy hands all over each others’ firm, supple bodies.”
“I’m sure it doesn’t,” Audax said.
“Also, I have trained the men to shout incredibly manly statements about themselves upon command.”
Audax snapped his fingers. “Spartans! Flatter yourselves!”
“I possess gigantic testicles forged from wrought iron by the hand of Hephaestus, God of All Blacksmiths, himself!” the first warrior shouted. “Ooorah!”
“Is that true?” the king asked.
“I don’t know that it is not true,” Audax said. “Spartans! Continue!”
“I can snap the neck of a griffin with nothing but the tight muscles of my buttocks!” the second Spartan shouted. “Ooorah!”
“That’s true,” Audax said. “I’ve seen him do it. Third Spartan, report!”
“I crave man ass all night and day!” the third Spartan shouted. “Oohrah!”
Audax rolled his eyes. “Third Spartan, that’s not really a macho statement about yourself so much as an interest in an, um, extracurricular activity that the good king doesn’t need to know about.”
“I’m sorry, General!” the third Spartan said. “I’ll think about it and get back to you! Oorah!”
“How does making them shout manly statements about themselves make them better warriors?” the king asked.
“Would you want to go up against an army of Spartans with such massive egos to compliment their oiled up muscles?” Audax asked.
“I should say…” The king stopped to cough in his fist. “I should say not.”
“My king,” Audax said as he stretched out his hand. “Please, let me assist you.”
“No,” Tyndarecus scoffed. “I may be old but I’m not dead.”
“I understand,” Audax said.
The party reached the port and waited as the royal ship drew nigh.
“My king,” the General said. “Far be it from me to question your wisdom, but I hope you know that the Mighty Spartan Army and I are infinitely loyal to the royal family. Should you ever desire to give the Dioscuri a break, we shall relish the chance to rescue Princess Helen the next time she is kidnapped by a pervert, which, given the way things have been going, will no doubt be sometime around next Tuesday, or Wednesday at the latest.”
The king smiled and patted the general on the shoulder.
“Noble Audax. Never would I question your loyalty to my family or to Sparta, especially when you and the Mighty Spartan Army have proven yourselves time and time again on the field of battle, but Helen is by far the hottest chick in the world and I’m sure you will understand that I just feel more comfortable when she is in the company of her brothers as opposed to an army of musclebound egomaniacs with oiled up muscles and gallons upon gallons of testosterone coursing through their veins.”
“Oh, you need not worry, your majesty,” Audax said. “We are not interested in Helen in that way.”
The king was taken aback. “Seriously?”
“No doubt,” Audax said.
“But aside from her kin, Helen is desired by every being with a penis,” the king said.
Tyndarecus raised an eyebrow. “I thought you said you dudes weren’t into other dudes.”
“I did not say we were not, not into dudes,” Audax replied. “Besides, I thought you said you weren’t judging?”
“I’m not,” Tyndarecus said.
“Mighty Spartan Army requirements are very strict,” the general explained. “If we were into dudes, which I’m not saying we are, we couldn’t very well run around advertising the fact that we are into dudes now could we?”
“Ah,” Tyndarecus said. “So you’re saying that you’re all into dudes?”
The general threw his hands up. “I didn’t say that.”
“Well,” the king said as he watched the ship come in. “I appreciate the offer, Audax, but I can’t take the risk that one of your men might be a switch hitter.”
“Not gonna lie,” Audax said. “The ninth Spartan warrior isn’t so much into dudes or chicks as he is into anything with a warm hole of any kind.”
“TMI, Audax,” the king said. “TMI.”
The ship docked. A contingent of sailors attached a gangplank to allow the occupants to exit the vessel.
“Princess Helen approaches!” shouted the first sailor from the ship’s deck. “Avert your eyes!”
“Shut your eyes!” the second sailor shouted as he walked down the gangplank. “Princess Helen comes this way!”
“What’s everyone on about?” the third sailor asked from the dock.
It was too late. All but the third sailor closed their eyes. That sailor, upon spotting the glorious beauty of Helen as she strolled down the gangplank with her brothers in tow, immediately went cross-eyed, became consumed by an orgasmic fit, then dropped to the deck.
“Why didn’t anyone tell me the Princess was disembarking?” the third sailor asked. “I soiled my tunic!”
“We did,” the first sailor shouted from the deck with his eyes shut. “Clean the shit out of your ears!”
Helen spotted Tyndarecus.
“Father!” the princess cried as she ran over and hugged the old man.
“Oh my darling daughter Helen!” Tyndarecus said as he wept tears of joy. “I am so delighted that you survived this week’s kidnapping.”
“The Dioscuri rescued me from the crusty old fucks!” Helen proudly declared.
“Castor and Pollux!” the king said.
The Dioscuri took turns hugging their old man.
“Father,” Castor said.
“Father,” Pollux repeated.
“My heart swells with pride that you have saved your sister from yet another weekly kidnapping!” the king said.
“Yeah,” Castor said. “Not like there was anything else we’d rather be doing.”
“Right,” Pollux said. “Now let’s go nap for five minutes before some pervert nabs Helen and we do this shit all over again.”
Tyndarecus frowned. “What…what is that? Are you boys using sarcasm on your father?”
“No,” Castor said.
“We’d never do that,” Pollux said.
Seconds later, the queen arrived with the royal niece and her contingent of Spartan warriors.
“I can block out the sun with my monstrous phallus!” the fourth Spartan warrior shouted.”Ooorah!”
“Yes, yes,” the queen said. “We all know you are all super gay. No one cares.”
Penelope was a curvaceous young woman. Tight in the waist, splatow in the other place if you catch my drift.
“Mother!” Helen said as she hugged the queen.
“Oh Helen!” the queen said. “We were so frightened that you’d been done in by those crusty old fucks!”
Helen let go of her mother and embraced Penelope. “Sweet cousin!”
Penelope spoke in a monotone and had a demeanor similar to what you modern readers might refer to as “depressed brainy goth chick.”
“Whoo-pee,” Penelope said as she let her arms hang at her sides, refusing to return the hug. “Helen’s back, y’all. Let’s all drop what we’re doing and talk about this for three or four hours. Hooray.”
Audax squinted as he looked out across the sea’s horizon. “My king!”
Tyndarecus looked up and joined his general in staring at a small blip that eventually turned into a ship.
“Is it a friend or foe?” the king asked.
“It…it bears the markings of a ship of Ithaca!” Audax proclaimed. “Surely it carries a friend.”
Castor and Pollux looked at each other.
“Oh come on,” the first brother said.
“It has to be…” the second brother replied.
Penelope flashed a rare smile. “Ithaca, you say?”
The royal family and the Mighty Spartan Army waited patiently until the ship reached the port.
A strapping young man with a full beard stepped out onto the deck and grinned.
“Whassup, beatches? Odysseus all up in Sparta’s ass! Woot woot!”