Trojan War: The Beginning II
The story is almost standard, and reminds me strongly of the story of Disney’s Sleeping Beauty, but instead of an evil fairy, the main character is the sinister Goddess of Discord and Strife: Eris.
Thetis, basically the most eligible bachelorette of the Gods that both Zeus and Poseidon wanted to sleep with her. Until they told a prophecy the Titan Prometheus that any son Thetis bore, would become greater than the father, possibly ruling Olympus, if Zeus became the father. This stopped their lustful advances upon Thetis dead in their tracks. Zeus quickly arranged to have her marry a mortal to make sure that no god marries her.
Zeus decided to marry her to the hero, Peleus, King of Phthia. Thetis, like many sea-deities, had the ability to change her shape as well being gifted with prophetic power. In order for Peleus to marry Thetis, Peleus had to capture while the goddess slept in the cave. Peleus had to hold the goddess as she changed herself into a fire, water, lioness, wolf and other shapes, until she gave in and consent to marry Peleus.
The Wedding of Peleus and Thetis was a grand affair. Yes, mortals and immortals have love affairs and one night stand all the time, but it wasn’t every day that an immortal married a mortal. Nearly all the gods and goddesses attended, as well as many mortals. One goddess was excluded from the guest list- Eris, the Goddess of Discord and Mischief.
It wasn't any kind of accident. The Gods knew that Eris' love of mischief would totally ruin the wedding reception. But Eris showed up anyway, and boy she was PISSED! She had brought with her one of Queen Hera’s beautiful and shiny Golden Apples. This apple in her possession is best known as the Apple of Discord. This was no wedding gift to the bride or groom.
Eris tossed the apple into the room, between the three of the most powerful Goddesses of Olympus Aphrodite, Hera, and Athena. On the apple was inscribed the simple words "to the fairest." All three fell to the charm of the apple's beauty and her own divine vanity - they all demanded the apple. When they couldn't reach an agreement (shocker!), they went to Zeus. Wow. He decided to delegate that question to someone else, because he knew that whichever Goddess was chosen, the other two were going to make the judge’s life a living hell.One night, when the stars shimmered brightly and the sheep grazed contentedly, Paris had a dream that his life would be forever changed. He awoke to find three goddesses standing before him, and clutched in his hand, a perfect apple inscribed "for the fairest." The goddesses, all coveting the prize, told Paris (who was twelve at the time) that Zeus himself decreed that the shepherd was to choose among them and award the trophy. Paris made a little choking noise and almost started crying. How could he, a mere mortal, decide which of the most beautiful women he would EVER see were the most gorgeous? He couldn't decide. The Goddesses bribe him.
Hera, magnificent in peacock feathers, declared that if he gave her the apple, she would make him the mightiest king on earth, with wealth beyond his dreams.
Athena, armed with helm and sword, promised to make him a great warrior and the wisest man in the entire world.
Aphrodite, clad in gossamer silk, offered Paris the most beautiful woman in the world to be his bride. Her name is Helen, Queen of Sparta and is married woman to Menelaus, King of Sparta and brother of the High King of Greece.
Being a simple man with no knowledge of his true heritage, Paris chose Aphrodite's bribe and put the apple into her hand. This started a chain of events that would not only lead to the successful abduction of Helen, but also enmity with the two goddesses he did not choose. Ultimately, his bad judgment led to a coalition of Greek City states attacking his country to regain Helen.