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While Telemachus is in Sparta speaking with Menelaus and Helen and asking them for advice or news of his father, the suitors back in Ithaca find out about his secret departure. Angry, the suitors plan an ambush when he returns home. They plan to kill Telemachus before he reaches home, and this will open up the power of the new king (assuming Odysseus does not ever return).
Medon, who is a herald in Ithaca, overhears what the suitors are planning, and he rushes to inform Penelope of their evil plan. She did not know of Telemachus' trip, either at this point.
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