Hard Work Pays Off – Boy’s Hand in the Spartan Land

Written by Nicolos

One day, back in ancient Sparta, three boys named Aeneas, Hector,  and Triton were roaming around Spartan lands. The year was 470 B.C.E, and King Armenius of Sparta came to them and told them to train for one year, for afterwards there would be a test to determine whether they live or die. It was Armenius’s own plan to see if the three boys were committed. If they “passed” the test, they would get placed in the mighty and massive Spartan army. Aeneas and Hector didn’t feel like training, so they went home. They were also stronger and faster than Triton, so they didn’t feel like they needed to train. Triton knew what he had to do. His father hired him a teacher named Hariyaman. However a trouble maker named Teucer told Aeneas and Hector not to fight. King Armenius eventually found out about it and was very irritated. I will deal with him later! , the king thought to himself.

Hariyaman came up to Triton and said, “We have a lot of work to do.  Now boy, are you ready to train?”

“Yes” Triton said.

Hariyaman taught him how to take down a stronger opponent by making him charge at him with his spear out and his shield up. Hariyaman taught him not to put his shield right in front of his eyes because if he did, his opponent could move out of the way without him noticing. Triton picked up his shield and protected himself so he could also see the opponent. He charged at Hariyaman and when he did it enough times, Hariyaman moved on to another tactic. He taught him how iron swords and shields had an advantage over bronze ones. Hariyaman also taught him how to use a spear and how to throw it. Triton was taught how to pivot his foot correctly, which helped him. Hariyaman also taught him what neither of the two boys knew, how to parry the opponent sword thrust and use it against them. It took Triton five months to finally master it. They trained and trained and trained, tiresome it felt to Triton, but he still kept training. Hariyaman was well pleased with Triton.

“You are doing well my boy; you will definitely pass the test!” Hariyaman said.

Triton was still confused but kept training.

Finally a year passed, and King Armenius summoned Aeneas, Hector, and Triton and took them into the arena. During that year they put in the arena a Persian Immortal (soldier) named Cycnus who was more advanced than the other Immortal boys. Three months before the year was up, the Persians gathered their forces to attack Sparta to get back Cycnus. The Spartan army beat them back and Cyncus stayed with them. The total deaths and casualties on Sparta were only about nine hundred men, however over one thousand two hundred Persians died.

King Armenius summoned Aeneas and shouted “Go into the arena and fight!”

Aeneas was an advanced Spartan and had he trained, would’ve probably defeated Cycnus. Aeneas ran at Cycnus with his shield covering his eyes and ran toward Cycnus. Triton and Hariyaman both saw this mistake, but kept watching. Cycnus moved out of the way and shot a bow and arrow and it hit his left shoulder. Aeneas, severely wounded, dropped to the ground. Cycnus came upon him and with a quick merciful stroke, cut Aeneas’ throat. Aeneas was dead, and King Armenius knew he didn’t train.

Next, King Armenius called Hector into the arena. Hector went inside the arena already knowing his fate. Hector picked up a bow and arrow and shot three of them at Cycnus, however all three of them hit his shield. Then, Hector picked up an iron shield and spear and he knew not to cover his eyes. He ran toward Cycnus with his spear out and ran. Cycnus, with his sword, blocked Hector’s spear thrust so violently and viciously that Hector’s spear flew out of his hand. Hector ran away from him for about ten seconds until Cycnus threw the spear that Hector dropped at him. The spear rammed its way into Hector’s neck, killing him almost instantly. King Armenius thought Hector trained, but not for very long.

Finally, King Armenius called Triton into the arena. Before he even stepped one foot into the arena, Hariyaman knew what the outcome would be. Triton picked up an iron shield and spear at the same time. Triton remembered how to pivot his foot and blocked the spear that Cycnus threw his way. Triton ran toward Cycnus with his spear out and shield covering his body except for his eyes, the exact same way Hector had done it. King Armenius thought he would be killed, but Triton KNEW something Hector didn’t know. Cycnus had a sword with him and tried to whack Triton’s spear out of his hand. Triton blocked every attempt made by Cycnus to kill him. Finally, as Cycnus was getting tired, Triton got his spear and hit Cycnus’ shield so mightily that Cycnus backed up. After that, Cycnus threw his shield at him, trying to knock him off his feet. This was too easy a move for Triton not to block. The battle had just begun.

Cycnus was still covered in iron armor, and he swung his sword back and forth with such speed that Triton could not come at him with an easy reach. Cycnus ran toward his shield and picked it up. Hariyaman knew this would be a hard battle for Triton to win, but he was still confident, and he watched the battle with pleasure in his eyes. Finally, Triton aimed his spear and hit Cycnus’ left arm while he was attaching the shield to his right arm, and Cycnus staggered. Blood flowed out of Cycnus’ arm. Cycnus also dropped his weapons. Triton came upon him and right before he was about to kill him, took his shield. Cycnus grabbed hold of Triton’s leg and stabbed him with his knife, the only thing he had left. Triton was raged and he speared Cycnus’ heart three times, one for each fight. Cycnus was dead!! King Armenius told Hariyaman to summon Triton to him, so he did.

Triton came before the king. King Armenius talked to Triton and said, “You know how I told you to train? You were confused; I could tell you were by your eyes. Sometimes we must practice things even when we don’t know why. You being confused and still training, that’s a perfect example. Now I have a troublemaker to take care of.” That very day, Teucer was put to death. However, based on his loyalty to the king and training, Triton was placed in the Spartan army. There would be a war later on that Triton would be in, the Peloponnesian! But that is a different but true story!