Then godlike Theoclymenus answered him: 'And whither shall I go, dear child? To what man's house shall I betake me, of such as are lords in rocky Ithaca? Shall I get me straight to thy mother and to thy home?
Telemachus reaches Pylos, but does not visit Nestor. To save time he goes at once on board ship, taking with him an unfortunate outlaw, Theoclymenus, a second-sighted man, or the family of Melampus, in which the gift of prophecy was hereditary. The ship passed the Elian coast at night, and evaded the ambush of the wooers.
But if thou hast naught to tell me, I will go to my widowed bed, and weep away the hours until dawn." Roused from his reverie by his mother's reproaches, Telemachus gave a brief account of his visit to Nestor and Menelaus, and of what they had told him. Penelope was musing on her son's report, when Theoclymenus, the second-sighted man, started up from his seat, and cried: "I see him, I see him!
Warned by a prophetess Theonoe that her husband is not far off, Helen comes to be reunited to him. A messenger from the coast announces that the wraith has faded into nothingness. Helen then warns Menelaus of her difficult position. She is wooed by Theoclymenus, king of the land, brother of Theonoe. Menelaus in despair thinks of killing himself and Helen to escape the tyrant.
With these words he moved the heart of Penelope. Then Theoclymenus said to her: "Madam, wife of Ulysses, Telemachus does not understand these things; listen therefore to me, for I can divine them surely, and will hide nothing from you.
The wooers mock Telemachus, and the second-sighted Theoclymenus sees the ominous shroud of death covering their bodies, and the walls dripping with blood. He leaves the doomed company. In the trial of the bow, none of the wooers can draw it; meanwhile Odysseus has declared himself to the neatherd and the swineherd.
"May Heaven fulfil thy prophecy," answered Telemachus, "and if thy words prove true I will load thee with benefits, and give thee cause to bless this hour." Being now convinced that he had found a friend, he called Peiræus, in whom he had full confidence, and bade him take Theoclymenus under his care until he himself returned to the town.
But he turned his back on them with scorn, and seeing a little group of his father's friends, among whom were Mentor and the aged Halitherses, he went and sat down among them. While they were questioning him about his travels, Peiræus came up, bringing with him the seer, Theoclymenus, whom Telemachus had left in his charge the day before.
The men before me have shrouds upon them. The courtyard is filled with ghosts. So Theoclymenus spoke, and all the wooers laughed at the second-sighted man, for he stumbled about the hall as if it were in darkness. Then said one of the wooers, 'Lead that man out of the house, for surely he cannot tell day from night. 'I will go from the place, said Theoclymenus. 'I see death approaching.
Then Theoclymenus said, 'And what, my dear young friend, is to become of me? To whose house, among all your chief men, am I to repair? or shall I go straight to your own house and to your mother?"