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AEGYPTIUS
This is the first time our assembly has been convened since the departure of King Odysseus, almost twenty years ago. What has occurred that merits this convocation? Are we threatened with attack? Is the kingdom under siege? Who has summoned us to this place? And why?
Telemachus moves forward and takes the staff.
TELEMACHUS
Venerable sir, it is I, Prince Telemachus, who invokes your presence. My motives are personal. As all here know, my royal father is presumed dead and my reluctant mother is plagued by suitors from this and other islands. Fifty of them are presently encamped in our house, and there they squat, consuming all within - and I powerless to stop them.
The suitors, seated in a group, glare at Telemachus.
TELEMACHUS (cont'd)
I therefore come before this body officially to demand their expulsion from the home of he who was once your lawful ruler. Let these... sponges be ordered to disperse and leave my mother in peace.
He jabs the SPEAR into the GROUND and walks out of the center of the hall. The ASSEMBLY murmurs sympathetic agreement with the young's speech.
CU HANDS GRABBING THE SPEAR FROM THE GROUND.
WIDEN TO REVEAL
ANTINOUS, defiantly facing the assembly.
ANTINOUS
There are two sides to every story. We suitors are not the disgraceful parasites you depict - the fault lies with your respected mother, (over the UPROAR), YES! Queen Penelope, who keeps us all dangling year after year. It is the Queen who is to blame for this deplorable situation. Some time ago she told us she would make her choice of husband when she finished weaving the funeral shroud of King Odysseus, on which she has labored lo these many years. Our hearts went out to her loving labor and patiently we waited for it to be concluded. Now I have learned by secret intelligence that everything the queen weaves by day she UN-weaves by night!
Sensation in the chamber, which Antinous relishes. In the audience, Melanthe smiles at her lover...
ANTINOUS (cont'd)
Is this straightforward dealing? (he walks to Telemachus, smirking) Let me speak plainly: we are suitors for your mother's hand, no more, no less. When Queen Penelope chooses a husband, the rest will depart. If you would have us
gone, young prince, order your mother to make her choice. If not, hold your peace.
Abruptly, he throws the speaker's SPEAR to Telemachus, who catches it.
TELEMACHUS
Bold words, Antinous, and easy to say, since you know well I could never bring myself to give such an order to a woman who still believes her husband lives.
MEDON, another elder, comes forward and takes the spear.
MEDON
I had two sons. One went with King Odysseus and perished at Troy; the other sues for the hand of Queen Penelope. Under the circumstances I cannot order him to leave your house. The families of those who died at Troy ought to merit something for their tragedy.
Murmurs of agreement. Telemachus is not going to get the vote. He watches Antinous et al, smiling at him.
TELEMACHUS
(takes the spear back)
In that case, I have another appeal. Let this assembly provide me with a small ship. I will seek news of my father. (breath) If I learn of his death, I will return and order my mother to marry.
Murmurs from the chamber. Eurymachos steps forward and rudely wrests the spear from Telemachus.
EURYMACHUS
My lords, this is nothing more than another delaying tactic - another tapestry to weave and unweave. Let us not put ourselves to the expense of a boat to find out what we already know, and lose more precious time.
Murmurs of agreement as Telemachus watches. No surprise.
TELEMACHUS
Then hear me. In my father's name and in my own I warn these shabby men: you stay in my house at your peril. If you persist in trespassing, you will die.
There's a tic of SILENCE in response to this. Telemachus starts out of the hall.
ANTINOUS
Gentlemen, I believe we have just heard the roar of a lion...
Telemachus keeps walking, as LAUGHTER BUILDS BEHIND HIM...
INT. TELEMACHUS' CHAMBER - NIGHT
Telemachus lies in bed, wide awake, listening...
EXT. TELEMACHUS' CHAMBER - NIGHT
TWO SUITORS stand outside his room. Antinous and Eurymachus are with them.
ANTINOUS
Stand here all night. See he doesn't leave.
INT. TELEMACHUS' CHAMBER - NIGHT
Telemachus listens as
EURYMACHUS'S VOICE
If he tries to escape, kill him.
Telemachus slowly rises from his bed, trying to make no noise. He goes to the window of his room and looks down.
TELEMACHUS' POV
it's a long way down...
Telemachus returns to his bed and starts twisting the sheets, hooking one end around a bedpost. It's a tricky business and he freezes once, worried he has attracted attention.
Satisfied, he throws the sheet end out the window.
EXT. TELEMACHUS' APARTMENTS - NIGHT
The sheet only goes half way down! Nonetheless, Telemachus slides down.
ON THE "ROPE" TELEMACHUS
sees TWO MORE SUITORS standing guard some ways off, their backs to him. Holding his breath, he drops quietly -
TO THE GROUND.
INT. INN - NIGHT
The PEOPLE of ITHAKA, (mainly fishermen at this place), drink and talk.
The door opens. Telemachus enters. They stop talking.
CU TELEMACHUS
TELEMACHUS
Men of Ithaka - how long will you be ruled by a mob?
Eumeaus, the shepherd, is among them. He stands, dashing his drink to the ground.
EUMAEUS
No longer.
After a pause, other men start standing, as well.
INT. EURYCLEIA'S BEDCHAMBER - NIGHT
Eurycleia asleep. Suddenly a hand goes over her mouth. She sits up, wide-eyed. It's Telemachus, who slowly removes his hand, holding a finger across his lips.
TELEMACHUS
I need the key to the store-room.
Off her look -
INT. PALACE CORRIDORS - NIGHT
The aged nurse and Telemachus steal quietly down the halls, tiptoeing through the GREAT HALL, where the Suitors, having had their usual meal, are drunkenly sleeping it off.
They don't wake as Telemachus and Eurycleia move past them on their way to -
EXT. STORE-ROOM - NIGHT
as Eurycleia UNLOCKS the door. The MEN who have volunteered to help Telemachus stand in line and withdraw supplies for the voyage as -
EURYCLEIA
At least bid your mother farewell-
TELEMACHUS
NO. She'd only worry that I'll disappear like my father. (off her look) I won't. Tell her that when she wakes... and give her this for me.
He kisses her. She holds on for dear life.
EXT. HARBOR - NIGHT
20 MEN piling onto a small SHIP, Eumaeus among them. He is stopped by Telemachus.
TELEMACHUS
You stay ashore, old friend.
EUMAEUS
But -
TELEMACHUS
Rowing is young men's work. I need you here. Be my eyes and ears. When I return I will visit you first.
Eumaeus nods reluctantly.
EUMAEUS
May the Gods protect you, master.
TELEMACHUS
Amen to that.
EXT. HARBOR - NIGHT
the boat being run out - big enough for twenty OARS...
LATER
by MOONLIGHT the little ship is quietly rowed out of the harbor...
ON DECK TELEMACHUS
smiles for the first time. This is more like it -
TELEMACHUS
(a whisper)
Raise the sail.
EXT. HARBOR - NIGHT
The SAIL goes up as the ship leaves Ithaka...
DISSOLVE TO:
A COUPLE MAKING LOVE
on a splendid bed, covered with LAVISH FURS...
The WOMAN, writhing in ecstasy is Kalypso. The MAN beneath her is Odysseus.
WIDEN TO REVEAL
INT. KALYPSO'S CAVERN - NIGHT
a treasure trove of goods, jewelry, silks and gold, a veritable cornucopia of luxury, the bed at its centre.
Kalypso collapses next to Odysseus. They lie there for a time, motionless. Then, she quietly traces her hand over a SCAR on his chest.
KALYPSO
Where did you get this?
ODYSSEUS
Troy.
KALYPSO
(another scar)
And this?
ODYSSEUS
From the Cyclops.
She finds another.
KALYPSO
This one?
ODYSSEUS
I was bitten by a ghost...
KALYPSO
Here's another. Also from Troy?
It's a long GASH on the inside of his RIGHT CALF.
ODYSSEUS
(smiles, remembering)
I was fourteen and hunting in the forest. A wild boar attacked me.
She turns him over and inspects his back - it is pure skin, unbroken. His face is turned away from her.
KALYPSO
I see you have never run from a fight.
Odysseus says nothing. She leans over, kisses him on the back of his neck, then silently, she leaves the bed and he
lies there by himself. He hears her HUMMING softly as she dresses. He stares into space.


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