And now the bodies are all gathered together at the gates of the court,
but he is purging the fair house with sulphur, and has kindled a great fire, and sent me forth to call thee. Nay, come with me, that the hearts of you two may enter into joy, for you have suffered many woes. But now at length has this thy long desire been fulfilled:
he has come himself, alive to his own hearth, and he has found both thee and his son in the halls; while as for those, even the wooers, who wrought him evil, on them has he taken vengeance one and all in his house.”
Then wise Penelope answered her: “Dear nurse, boast not yet loudly over them with laughter.
Thou knowest how welcome the sight of him in the halls would be to all, but above all to me and to his son, born of us two. But this is no true tale, as thou tellest it; nay, some one of the immortals has slain the lordly wooers in wrath at their grievous insolence and their evil deeds.
For they honored no one among men upon the earth, were he evil or good, whosoever came among them; therefore it is through their own wanton folly that they have suffered evil. But Odysseus far away has lost his return to the land of Achaea
, and is lost himself.”
Then the dear nurse Eurycleia answered her:
“My child, what a word has escaped the barrier of thy teeth, in that thou saidst that thy husband, who even now is here, at his own hearth, would never more return! Thy heart is ever unbelieving. Nay come, I will tell thee a manifest sign besides, even the scar of the wound which long ago the boar dealt him with his white tusk.
This I marked while I washed his feet, and was fain to tell it to thee as well, but he laid his hand upon my mouth, and in the great wisdom of his heart would not suffer me to speak. So come with me; but I will set my very life at stake that, if I deceive thee, thou shouldest slay me by a most pitiful death.”
Then wise Penelope answered her: “Dear nurse, it is hard for thee to comprehend the counsels of the gods that are forever, how wise soever thou art. Nevertheless let us go to my son, that I may see the wooers dead and him that slew them.”