Has a history of losing wives, most famous being Helen
Has a half-mortal daughter, Arianna.
Moved from Boston, Massachusetts
It was said that Helen praised Menelaus' intelligence and good looks. She didn't find herself repulsed by him, nor was he the fat, overbearing husband that romantics would like to make him for the sake of monopolizing on why she ran away with Paris. Modern film even made him quite disgusting. In truth, he was a well-built warrior with red hair. He was probably only about second rate, and even some old Egyptian texts like to say he was "feeble". Apollo himself even called him "soft". Put up against his brother, or some of his fellow Achanean warriors, he wasn't in their league. Menelaus was a laid back guy. His brother was the aggressor.
His temperament matched his non-aggressive nature. He might have been royalty, but he was the likable guy. He did his duties, but he also held compassion for others. Except when they double-crossed him, then that fire bristled up and he could hold a grudge. A woman's tears however, have broken him faster than any sword. He is either too nice or just ridiculously gullible.
His father was King Atreus. His uncle, Thyestes. As families go, the two had a bitter feud between them, that eventually ripped the family in two. Menelaus and his brother Agamemnon were sent into exile after the death of their father by their own cousin. When the time was right, they overthrew Thyestes and were married off. Agamemnon to Clytemnestra, Menelaus to Helen.
If a royal marriage was an alliance, a royal seduction was an act of war
Menelaus is no stranger to being bereaved from his most prized possessions. The great Trojan War was brought on because he let Paris into his home, his hospitality robbed by an arrogant youth who thought he deserved another man's wife. While tales of treason and broken marriages are nothing new, Menelaus returned with the biggest grand gesture ever. A thousand ships and warriors behind him to take back what was stolen from him. In the days of Ancient cultures, a man's wife was a man's property. Troy and Greece were rivals, but Menelaus was trying for peace, and instead he was slighted. Paris had not just stolen his wife, but he had stolen his honor.
Helen wasn't just a beautiful woman. She was intelligent, ambitious, and he adored her. They had a good relationship. They saw each other as equals. Menelaus confided in Helen and she seemed to adore him just as much. That was why when Paris destroyed his marriage, he did not blame his beautiful bride. It had never been her fault. Unfortunately, ten years of war did a lot to a man physically and mentally. He started to question if it was all worth it, if he shouldn't just take what was left of his shredded dignity and let go. Helen was just a woman that was really hard to let go of.
He bade his brother help him, as Agamemnon never questioned doing for his little brother, and it was a war that would glorify him. Agamemnon seemed to almost want this war just to show off. Menelaus wasn't showing off for the sake of doing so, he just wanted to be sure he destroyed all of Troy to get back what he deserved. Not only his wife, but his companion, and mother to their little girl, Hermione.
The end of the war brought destruction to Troy, and at one point with a one-on-one duel, Menelaus would have killed Paris if not for Aphrodite's intervention. After the sack of Troy, Menelaus found Helen ready to destroy her for leaving him. The stories insist he felt pity on her, other's that her beauty bewitched him to spare her after she fell at his feet begging for forgiveness. Whatever the reason, it is between Menelaus and Helen as to what happened. He took her back, but his heart was never fully mended from the heartache it had caused.
He was immortalized by Hera, and thought to have survived his immortal life in the Elysium Fields with Helen by his side.
USS Menelaus (ARL-13)
His immortal life would not always be so beautiful as a fairy tale ending. The world today is a very different one than ancient times. He came back during World War II, when one of 39 Achelous-class landing craft repair ships built for the United States Navy was named after him.
Menelaus was tired of war, he sought to get away from the brutality. He'd settled down. Tried the family life again, but he was no stranger to rejection. The beauty left, and he has once again found himself alone with a child as history cruelly repeats itself. His daughter, Arianna, being only six, does not remember much of her mother. This one he didn't chase after.
Own Headcannon: During the Trojan War, Menelaus wrote letters to Helen even though she'd never see them. They weren't love letters, just his own means of talking to her (someone he had once trusted) to cope and encourage him through the war. He burned them during the war, giving only himself that mental conversation that he thought he might never have.
PB: Sam Heughan.
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