To the Sea
After going a great distance, the soldiers came to a large city named Gymnias. They didn’t bother to look around, as they were quite weary from their journey. However, when they left the city, they were earnestly marching forward, for the guide had said that they would catch sight of the sea in five days, or they could kill him. So they were in high spirits as they traveled through the hostile country, pillaging and burning whatever they saw, with great encouragement from their guide. He obviously had come for this, the destruction of an enemy country.
On the morn of the fifth day, as they were climbing the mountain called Theches, some of the men in the front of the regiment, catching sight of the sea, cried out in progressively louder volume as they got nearer to their destination. Xenophon, however, in the rearguard, did not know what was going on, and hearing their shouts, was afraid that enemies had attacked them. This should have been expected, for they had left almost nothing untouched in the land behind them, and the angry inhabitants were following them. In fact, the rearguard had killed some and captured others by lying in ambush, and had taken about twenty shields covered with the hides of shaggy oxen.
Having come to the conclusion that they were under attack, Xenophon quickly assembled the cavalry, and taking them and Lycius with him, rode forward to save his comrades. However, as he got closer, the joyous shouts of “the sea, the sea” put aside all his fears and sent him rushing to see that which was making everyone else so happy.
As he came thundering to the summit, Xenophon saw a sight many others would never see. Everyone was crying and hugging. Rank was forgotten as generals hugged soldiers and everyone hugged everyone else. Having reached their destination, the soldiers set about building a great monument of stones to commemorate the occasion. With this done, their guide put all twenty of the enemy shields against the cairn and began hacking them to pieces. He encouraged the others to do the same and they did.
With the mission complete, Hellenes dismissed the guide and gave him many presents. A horse, a silver bowl, a Persian dress, and ten darics were the aforementioned gifts. However, what their guide really wished to have were their rings, and many of them gave their rings to him willingly. After this, he pointed out a village in which they could find quarters and the road back to Macrones. Then he left.