With this they turned out of their way and lay down among the corpses. Dolon suspected nothing and soon passed them, but when he had got about as far as the distance by which a mule-plowed furrow exceeds one that has been ploughed by oxen (for mules can plow fallow land quicker than oxen) they ran after him, and when he heard their footsteps he stood still, for he made sure they were friends from the Trojan camp come by Hektor's orders to bid him return; when, however, they were only a spear's cast, or less away form him, he saw that they were enemies as fast as his legs could take him. The others gave chase at once, and as a couple of well-trained hounds press forward after a doe or hare that runs screaming in front of them, even so did the son of Tydeus and Odysseus pursue Dolon and cut him off from his own people. But when he had fled so far towards the ships that he would soon have fallen in with the outposts, Athena infused fresh strength into the son of Tydeus for fear some other of the Achaeans might have the glory of being first to hit him, and he might himself be only second; he therefore sprang forward with his spear and said, "Stand, or I shall throw my spear, and in that case I shall soon make an end of you."
He threw as he spoke, but missed his aim on purpose. The dart flew over the man's right shoulder, and then stuck in the ground. He stood stock still, trembling and in great fear; his teeth chattered, and he turned pale with fear. The two came breathless up to him and seized his hands, whereon he began to weep and said, "Take me alive; I will ransom myself; we have great store of gold, bronze, and wrought iron, and from this my father will satisfy you with a very large ransom, should he hear of my being alive at the ships of the Achaeans."
"Fear not," replied Odysseus, "let no thought of death be in your mind; but tell me, and tell me true, why are you thus going about alone in the dead of night away from your camp and towards the ships, while other men are sleeping? Is it to plunder the bodies of the slain, or did Hektor send you to spy out what was going on at the ships? Or did you come here of your own mere notion [noon]?"
Dolon answered, his limbs trembling beneath him: "Hektor, with his vain flattering promises, lured me into derangement [atê]. He said he would give me the horses of the noble son of Peleus and his bronze-bedizened chariot; he bade me go through the darkness of the fleeing night, get close to the enemy, and find out whether the ships are still guarded as heretofore, or whether, now that we have beaten them, the Achaeans design to flee, and through sheer exhaustion are neglecting to keep their watches."
Odysseus smiled at him and answered, "You had indeed set your heart upon a great reward, but the horses of the descendant of Aiakos are hardly to be kept in hand or driven by any other mortal man than Achilles himself, whose mother was an immortal. But tell me, and tell me true, where did you leave Hektor when you started? Where lies his armor and his horses? How, too, are the watches and sleeping-ground of the Trojans ordered? What are their plans? Will they stay here by the ships and away from the city, or now that they have worsted the Achaeans, will they retire within their walls?"
And Dolon answered, "I will tell you truly all. Hektor and the other councilors are now holding conference by the monument [sêma] of great Ilos, away from the general tumult; as for the guards about which you ask me, there is no chosen watch to keep guard over the host. The Trojans have their watchfires, for they are bound to have them; they, therefore, are awake and keep each other to their duty as sentinels; but the allies who have come from other places are asleep and leave it to the Trojans to keep guard, for their wives and children are not here."
Odysseus then said, "Now tell me; are they sleeping among the Trojan troops, or do they lie apart? Explain this that I may understand it."
"I will tell you truly all," replied Dolon. "To the seaward lie the Carians, the Paeonian bowmen, the Leleges, the Cauconians, and the noble Pelasgi. The Lysians and proud Mysians,