Odysseus: Novel Summary: Chapters 17-18
Chapter 17: Odysseus and Telemachus return to their houses separately in order to keep Odysseus identity concealed. Telemachus summons Theoklymenos, and Telemachus tells his mother of his travels in Pylos and Sparta, in flashback form. Eumaios is with Odysseus on the road to Odysseus' house, where they meet a disloyal servant who treats them both poorly. Then, Odysseus' old dog, Argos, recognizes his master, but dies the moment after. Odysseus reaches his home, still in disguise, and acts like a beggar. Most of the suitors treat him fairly well, but Antinoos, the lead suitor, mocks Odysseus and hits him. The other suitors are angry at his behavior.
Meanwhile, Eumaios informs Penelope about the strange beggar. Penelope summons Odysseus so she can talk to him.
Chapter 18: While the message is being relayed, a true beggar named Iros comes by the house and challenges Odysseus to a fight. Odysseus wins, and Iros is unconscious. Penelope decides to leave her room and go to the area of the suitors. She starts to play her waiting games again, talking of marriage but also of gift-giving. Odysseus is treated poorly by some of the suitors, and some of Penelope's servant women are sleeping with some of them. Eurymachos becomes very violent and throws a stool at Odysseus, but he and the rest of the suitors finally go home for the evening.