The suitors are preparing the death of Telemachus when he returns to Ithaca

While Telemachus was in Pylos and Sparta, the grooms learned by chance from Noemon that Telemachus left Ithaca. They were afraid, because they thought that Telemachus went for help to Pylos and Sparta. Antinoy advised the suitors to equip a ship and, sailing out to sea, wait for Telemachus in order to unexpectedly attack and kill him. All the suitors immediately agreed to this evil deed. Gathering the rowers, they went to the seashore, equipped the ship and sailed towards the island of Asteris to set up an ambush there. Penelope found out about their insidious plan. She came to despair. After all, she did not know that Telemachus had sailed from Ithaca. She already wanted to send a servant to Odysseus' father, the elder Laertes, to inform him of the danger that threatens his grandson. But the maid Eurycleia stopped her from doing so. She advised Penelope to pray to the goddess Athena for help. The queen listened to Eurycleia, made a sacrifice to the goddess and turned to her with a prayer. Then she lay down on her rich bed and fell asleep. The goddess Athena heeded her prayers. She sent the ghost of her sister to the sleeping Penelope Iftima. The ghost told Penelope that Telemachus would not die. When Penelope asked about the fate of her husband, the ghost of Iftima did not answer her and disappeared like a light fog. Penelope woke up; she realized that the gods sent her this vision.