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Troilus and Cressida Act 5, Scene 1 Summary
Achilles chills with Patroclus and talks trash about how he's going to make mincemeat out of Hector tomorrow. Then Thersites (the loudmouth slave) shows up at the Greek camp with a letter from Troy. Thersites and Achilles bag on each other, which, of course. Did you expect anything else? Patroclus tries to chime in but Thersites tells him to pipe down and calls him a man-whore. To get his point across, Thersites lists a bunch of nasty diseases (most of which are STDs) and symptoms and says he hopes Patroclus experiences them all. Want a sampling? "Rotten diseases of the south, the guts-griping, ruptures [...] raw eyes, dirt-rotten livers," "incurable bone-ache," and so on. Meanwhile, Achilles reads his letter. It's from Queen Hecuba and includes a little love token from Polyxena (Hecuba's daughter). Achilles is all "Rats! I was really looking forward to killing Hector tomorrow but I have to go back to Troy because I promised both women I wouldn't fight." Achilles and Patroclus order Thersites to get their tent ready for a party that night. Tent party, y'all! Alone on stage, Thersites delivers one of his nasty soliloquies about Achilles, Patroclus, and Agamemnon, who's got "ear-wax" for a brain. Finally, a bunch of guys show up at Achilles' tent and go inside to par-tay. When Diomedes leaves, Ulysses whispers that Troilus should follow him to Calchas' tent. Thersites follows too and says he doesn't trust Diomedes. He then repeats a rumor that Diomedes is going to hook up with a "Trojan drab" (whore) in Calchas' tent.
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