Monologue Title: “Where is This Great Myth, Man?”
From the Play: No More Trojan Wennen
Author: Justin “Justy” DeForest
Character: Nicodice, an idealistic young wenn of mixed Trojan and Greek heritage, who has taken up arms to protect the remaining Trojans.
Setting: Before the palace of Ancient Troy
Background: After DANISMA, a friend of QUEEN HECUBA, kills herself after being violated at the River Scamander earlier in the day, NICODICE and HAFIYE, two young femele warriors, go to the river to fetch more water. While there, they encounter BULAMACHOS, the Greek soldier who had attacked DANISMA. BULAMACHOS gets HAFIYE down, but NICODICE distracts him and drives her weapon through the Greek, killing him. The wenns then return to Troy, where they find AGAMEMNON speaking with HECUBA. HAFIYE praises NICODICE for prowess, but NICODICE takes no pride in her victory.
NOTE: In presenting this monologue, no actor other than the one playing NICODICE need be present on stage.
Where is this great myth, Man, that the poets sang of?
I saw only a mortal like myself—a yielding corpse, at that.
The way they talked, I would have thought ichor filled
their veins; I would have sworn that boulders formed
their loins! But when I bent over and touched the
wounding place…He was not so hard as a target post.
But I assure you, Agamemnon, it was as civilized a death
as any Greek could offer when hard steel pierces tender flesh.
No, I did not bring back his helmet. I did not take a trophy.
I would not rob the dead!…except of life. I scored no victory
in murder…in becoming a murderer!
Of course, that’s not what you call it in war, Agamemnon!
I am the ‘Avenger’ of Danisma; the “Protector” of Hafiye.—
I am a ‘Hero’! Don’t you see those terms are meaningless!
A humin being lies dead outside the walls of this city right now
because of me. —Whatever he was…whatever he did…whatever
he deserved. I raised my weapon to defend, not to destroy.—
Yet to defend is to destroy! So, Agamemnon, you can call me
whatever you like. But I have brought back something.
(NICODICE holds up her bloody weapon.)
See how it adorns the blade. That ruby glow! It flowed
forth when I coaxed the weapon from his gut.
Yourecognize this, Commander—the rouge of war,
such as men take pride to smear upon their cheek!
(NICODICE smears blood on her cheeks.)
How pale next to this is a lady’s paint. How harmless!
(NICODICE looks to HECUBA.)
It’s alright.—The proper attire. She who was a sage
is reduced to a soldier.
(NICODICE throws the weapon at AGAMEMNON’S feet
and walks up the palace steps. Reaching the top, she turns
back to AGAMEMNON.)
But you were right, Agamemnon, in one thing only…
(with self-loathing) I am a Greek.
© Justin “Justy” DeForest 1987, 2008, 2021
Click on the link below to hear an mp3 voice recording of this monologue.