ACHILLES

“And then, there was Achilles. Now there was a guy who had it all: the build, the foot-speed. He could jab! He could take a hit! He could keep on comin’! BUT THAT FORSLUGGINER HEEL OF HIS! He barely gets nicked there once, and kaboom! He’s history.”

Philoctetes, Hercules

One of the most famous heroes of ancient Greece would be Achilles, who is best known for his participation in the Trojan War. Achilles had a complex heritage. His father Peleus was the king of the Myrmidons while his mother was a nymph and sea goddess named Thetis. His grandfather on his mother’s side was a minor sea god named Nereus. So, Achilles was a demigod in the sense that his mother and grandfather were gods while everyone on his father’s side were mortals. When he was an infant, his mother tried to make him immortal by dipping him in the River Styx. However, Peleus thought Thetis was harming their son and interrupted the ritual before it could be completed. Even so, being immersed in the River Styx made Achilles virtually invulnerable and invincible in combat. His power became legendary during the Trojan War, where he slew countless foes including Prince Hector of Troy. Despite his invulnerability, Achilles’s heel was his only vulnerable spot because it was the only part of him his mother did not dip in the River Styx. As a result, Achilles was slain by Prince Paris near the end of the Trojan War. It was his death that gave us the phrase “Achilles heel”, which alludes to something’s weakness. Achilles has always been one of my favorite characters in Greek mythology. In my story on Greek mythology, my main character’s name will rhyme with Achilles. I will also draw inspiration from Achilles’s complex blood ties with the gods when creating my demigod characters. The River Styx will also be mentioned in the story along with its invulnerability properties.

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