My last post was the beginning of Chapter one, so here is the rest of the Chapter for those of you who said you would like to keep reading. Remember that I am interested in what you want to know more about, and what ever else you want to say. Because I expect this to be a novel someday, I ask you to respect the copyright and leave it here on my Blog.
"You see, she was a child of rape. Yup! Good old Zeus, master God, had come down and raped her mother Leda. Yes. The books say he visited Leda in the shape of a swan and that she then had children. So he did it in the shape of a Swan, but come on! And then, her own Daddy-swan-Zeus, the God above, had not stuck around long enough to get to know her. True, her Mom was married to a nice man, but Helen couldn't help but wonder about her real Dad because she was only one of four children that Leda gave birth to that day. Well, that isn't quite true. Leda gave birth to only one thing--an egg! Well, what do you expect from a mating between a human and a bird? Zeus was Helen's father, and when he "visited" Leda, he looked like a swan! And myths are always larger than life, so, of course, Leda layed an egg and there were four children inside rather than one. Helen had a twin sister named Clytemnestra and two twin brothers named Castor and Pollux. Well, the boys right away claimed kinship with papa Zeus and left, so the girls were alone with their earthly parents. And their earthly Dad worried about who they would marry because their husbands would inherit the land. So the sisters grew up with no choice but to marry, and they had no choice but to marry the two strongest most competitive men available, the brothers Menelaus and Agamemnon. And these two boys were not chosen for the length of their names but because of their power to make alliances. They took an oath to protect each others' marriages. They made all the rejected suitors take the same oath. A group of men stood and said, 'We accept this marriage. We will not try to take your new wives away from you. We will defend to the death the rightful marriages of the two sisters Helen and Clytemnestra to the two brothers Menelaus and Agamemnon.' They took this oath and then they drank some wine and broke some glasses and went back to their far away homes without a second thought."
Alice went through the actions of shaking hands and drinking and throwing and putting thumbs up and all the time backing away and sneaking back until she heard enough laughter. She came forward again, this time slinking into the character and voice of Helen.
"But Helen had not yet fallen in love with her husband. She resented the deal which had gotten her born and the deal which had gotten her married. So she thought about the letter she received from Paris. Why not think about it? 'I am yours and you are mine,' he said. And why not go with him? She didn't know him, but maybe he loved her! Her own husband only talked about how, thank you very much, he now was pretty powerful because he had her land. And Paris seemed to want to take her away from it all, to his home in Troy. Helen had heard of Troy as one of the seven wonders of the world. She would like to see it. She was tempted, but she hesitated because of the pact between her hubby and his bro. If she left with someone, they would probably go to war to get her back. War! With her as the cause. Everything that was human inside of Helen screamed "NO."
"Helen told me that she was about to sit and write Paris a long and grateful letter that thanked him for the compliment and said NO, she wouldn't go; she wouldn't cause war. She said that she was sitting there just like this when she felt several hands lifting her up--despite gravity and despite walls and ceilings--the hands lifted her way way up into the sky. She said she kicked and screamed, "No, No, I won't go! Leave me alone; let me go!"
And with this the Gong sounded again, and Alice jumped up to stand in the rocking chair. There she teetered, saying the words of Helen as if she had become her, looking out over the audience as if it were the entire world:
No, let me down. I don't want to go! Where are you taking me! Put me down. Not here, back home. Who the Hell are you, anyway? Yeah, right. My real Dad wants to meet me now? Well he can forget it. OOOOO. Wait come back! Don't leave me up here in the clouds! Ohhhh. OHHHH. Ah. I can see a lot. HEY! That's Menelaus! He's in the harbor with the ships and there's Aggy too. Looks like war preparations already. With, no! Yes! They've used my likeness for the figure heads of the ships. Ohh, noo. No. Just where is Paris anyway? Why doesn't he tell everyone that he didn't take me to Troy?
Oh, Oh, there he is, already in Troy. He thinks that fashion model with him IS me. He thinks that's me! She sort of looks like me--she really looks like me! Hey Paris! I'm up here! hey Menelaus,I'm up here! Don't either of you recognize me? Look up, damn you! And, if I know my husband, this is war. And, if I know my husband, this war will last ten years! And if I know my husband, he'll blame it all on me!
At this point Alice/Helen groaned and sat down in her chair rocking it to a stand still. She stroked her books. She sighed.
She looked out at all of the little children who had just heard the story, and she said, "Don't you just love books? Sometimes they are true, and sometimes not. And, every once in a while, a character comes forward to tell her own story. We just have to listen."
"But is Helen right?" one child asked as the lights came up.
"The war lasted for 10 years," Alice answered with a smile. "Could you believe it was all for nothing?"
"No, that's stupid."
Yes, you're probably right."
"Humph," said the child as he moved off. Alice heard another ask her Mommy what rape was.
"Uh oh," she thought.
Chapter One ends here.