Previously on The House of Atreus, Thyestes and his son/grandson, Aegisthus, wreaked revenge for the cannibalistic consumption of their kin, by their kin. They exiled the royal heirs of Argos, Agamemnon and Menelaus, to Sparta.
Sparta was a fantastic spot for exiled warrior princes, as the aging King of Sparta was unlucky enough to have engendered mere daughters. Due to the proliferation of total babes, not only did Agamemnon and Menelaus manage to become good friends, but they also secured advantageous marriages.
AGAMEMNON AND MENELAUS SET UP SHOP
For years (ok, more like weeks), Agamemnon had his eye on the beautiful and intelligent Clytemnestra, Princess of Sparta. Unfortunately, she was super taken. Like, married and bouncing a newborn on her knee amounts of unavailable. Agamemnon, however, who’s motto was “just cause there’s a goalie don’t mean you can’t score”, wasn’t worried.
One fine day he showed up at Cly’s abode, and found her breastfeeding. Never a subtle man, Agamemnon ripped the infant from her bosom and threw it to the floor, successfully spattering the tile in a new patina of brain. Cly was – naturally – distressed, and called for help from her husband.
The two men engaged in battle. Poor Cly’s husband was no match for the mighty Agamemnon, who had grown up among murderers and cannibals. He was shortly dispatched with, and Cly was single again!
They had themselves a double wedding. Menelaus felt no need to one up his brother and win himself a widow, settling instead for the gorgeous Princess Helen, hottest lady in the world. They were, if nothing, proud men with lofty goals.
Menelaus, since he had not gained his wife by murderous intent and subterfuge, was awarded with the Kingdom of Sparta. Together, he and his brother took the Spartan army over to Argos and reconquered the land. They killed Thyestes and exiled Aegisthus, a bonding exercise recommended by their therapist. Because they were actually buddies instead of backstabbing liars, Menelaus gave Agamemnon the old home kingdom.
Agamemnon, for his part, did a great job of ruling and expanding Argos. He had a lot of repressed issue that he worked through by being an epic warrior on the field of battle. Just about the time he was settling into the dotage of his middle age, he found himself as the most powerful King in all of Greece.
To celebrate this achievement, Menelaus decided to throw his brother a party, and invited some new friends of his who had sailed over from the distant land of Troy. The wine was flowing, the dancers were dancing, and in short, it was a fantastic feast. Still, people couldn’t help noticing the absence of the hostess. When was the last time anyone had seen Helen?
Meanwhile, in the library (which is always empty during a feast), Helen and Paris were hatching a plot. Well, actually, it was probably mostly Helen’s idea. Paris wasn’t much of a thinker, although he was very good in bed.
“Shhh! They’ll hear us!”
“Helen, this is literally the worst idea. Your husband is, like, one of the most belligerent people I have ever met.”
“And you want to doom me to a fate being his wife? I’m not staying in this house one second longer.”
“I don’t know, man. I mean, you’re great and all! This has been a fantastic vacation. I’m just not sure if I’m ready for a committed relationship right now?”
Helen pouted while Paris dug himself deeper.
“It’s just that, well, this is the first time I’ve been outside the walls of Troy! There are so many people, so many beautiful women, and I’m an appreciator of the form. I know that, like, you’re literally the most gorgeous gal on the planet, but taking you home to meet the family makes it all seem so serious. Can’t we just be friends?”
“Paris. If you don’t take me with you, I’ll steal your sword and show it to my husband.”
“No! Ok, ok, let’s go hide on the ships.”
And that’s how Paris absconded with Helen, or rather, how she absconded with him. Anyway, after Menelaus read her not-very-nice goodbye note, he was righteously pissed off. Like, so so mad. He drank all the whiskey, grabbed his spear, and set off to go on a nice calming killing spree. Agamemnon sailed on over to help.
“Menelaus! Dear brother, what’s this I hear about you watching The Notebook for the fifth time this week?”
“I can’t help it Agie! I cry and cry, but I just can’t make myself believe she’s not coming back!”
“Of course she’s coming back! You and me, we’re going to go get her. We’ll drag her here by the hair if we have to.”
“What’s the use! She doesn’t love me. I don’t know if she ever did. Love is a lie! I gave her my heart and soul, and… and… *gasp* is she still using my Netflix subscription?! In his house! This means war!”
“That’s the spirit! Will someone please get Odysseus, Achilles, Ajax, and Nestor on the phone? It’s time to gather the squad!”
So, Agamemnon, King of Kings, gathered together all the armies of Greece. They went sailing over in a huge caravan to demand Helen back. It was an epic road-trip, or rather, sea-trip, as the case may have been.
Next week, The Sacrifice of Iphigenia! Featuring a wedding, a funeral, and Achilles comes out of the closet.