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  • therealphiloctetes

Hey Herc!


How's my favorite fellow hero? Your name has been everywhere lately. You're in all the movies, TV shows, songs, and books now. Looks like you've even got quite the cult worshiping you, too. I visited one of the festivals they hold each year in Kynosarges a while back and let me tell you, people had statues, paintings, and figurines of you all over the place. Who would've thought that after all this time your face would still be everywhere? It's so awesome to see.


I'm lucky I've gotten some attention myself just from having known you. I'm still waiting for my own feature-length film but hopefully I'll have one soon. I think my story truly is one for the big screen. I know we only met right before I lit the fire for your funeral, but over the years you have become one of my dearest friends. Remember how I was the only one who would help you out after your second wife Deianira tricked you into putting on the Shirt of Nessus? No one else had the guts to light a pyre for the great Heracules while he was still alive but I could tell how much pain that tainted centaur's shirt was causing you. Nessus sure did get his revenge on you for shooting him, didn't he? Apparently Nessus told Deianira that giving you the shirt tainted with his blood would make you stay loyal to her forever but I just can't believe she bought that. Anyway, it feels like it was only yesterday that I came across you begging to die. Picturing you in such agonizing pain still makes me sick to my stomach. You were in enough pain to build your own funeral pyre; the only honorable thing I could have done was light it for you. I am still really grateful for the bow and poisoned arrows you gave me in exchange for my help. Those arrows really meant a lot to me and you know I hate to ask you for help but it would mean even more if you could help me break into the entertainment and arts industry the way you did.


It's not like I haven't done anything worthy of the big screen. You wouldn't just be championing some average Jason. As you know I led the sack of Troy inside the Trojan horse after my crew tried to abandon me on Lemnos. I was down, injured and alone, just like the best protagonists are in the movies, but then I soared to military genius and came up with the idea to attack from inside a wooden horse. Some people say Odysseus came up with that idea but they'd be mistaken. Odysseus was done with the war. Only Neoptolemus and I still wanted to attack the city. It was so tough to gain the support of all the troops they because everyone wanted us to withdraw from the war completely. I had to kill Paris, the cause of the whole war just to gather enough support to launch an attack. I finally convinced everyone my plan was sure to succeed but of course Odysseus took credit after the fact and the rest is history. You know how it is, the hero game is so political sometimes and the way your story gets told all depends on who you know.


Lots of people wrote down my voyages and turned them into plays back in the day, but now only Sophocles' play still exists and most people haven't even heard of me. For whatever reason, I just haven't been able to capture people's hearts the way you have. What am I missing? My resume might not be as impressive as yours but who knows what would've happened if I hadn't been stranded by my comrades on Lemnos for ten years. They threw me off the ship onto an island all because of a snake bite. I know it looked pretty bad but I was fine. I didn't die and once you helped me find the right physician I was good as new. It just hurt to be thrown overboard by people I thought were my friends. I guess I really shouldn't have been surprised when they took all the credit for my ideas in the Trojan war. They had already betrayed me once. I had the right idea on Lemnos. I was just going to live out the rest of my days there without backstabbing military friends. Sure, I wouldn't have become a war hero but now no one remembers what I did anyway. If I had stayed on Lemnos maybe I could've had a nice family or something. I only went on to Troy because you insisted I was needed there. I don't regret going but I wish people could know the truth. Would you please consider helping me out? After all, you still kind of owe me. I only got bitten by that snake because Hera sent it after she found out I helped you. Just return the favor and do what you can to boost my career at this low point.


I'm sure a hero like you gets a lot of messages like this and lots people are looking for your help. I bet you get tired of hearing how great you are but you really are such an awesome guy I'm sure you wouldn't hesitate to help the people you care about. Seems like you really have it all these days. Fame, fortune and loads of adoring fans I'm sure. I just wanted to say I'm lucky to have a friend like you and I'd really appreciate it if you'd keep mentioning my name to your screenwriter friends.


Your main man,


Phil

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