The story of how the three brothers (Zeus, Hades, Poseidon) divided the dominions after the fall of Cronus.
“The time has come brothers for dividing the spoils.” Zeus announced merrily to his two brothers as he held out a hand clutching three sticks. “Dad’s finally dead so we can divide up the realms between the three of us.”
Poseidon stood on the barren ground and tapped his foot impatiently. “Come on, Zeus! We haven’t got all day!”
Zeus looked confusingly at his brother and stared around at the barren wastelands of earth. “What else could you possible have to do?”
Hades stood apart from his two brothers and snickered.
Zeus shot Hades a look. “Fine. As you can see, each of these sticks is a different size, representing a different domain. The longest stick represents the Heavens, the second longest, the sea, and the shortest is the Underworld.”
Hades glanced over at Poseidon. “I hope you have fun in the land of the dead brother.” He snorted.
“I hope you can swim, Hades.” Chortled Poseidon. “I’d hate to look down from the Heavens and see you thrashing around in the water.”
Hades glared at Poseidon.
Zeus continued. “And we all know that the earth and Mount Olympus will be out of bounds and therefore a joint domain?”
“Yes, yes, whatever.” Said Poseidon.
“Of course.” Sighed Hades.
Zeus held out his hand towards his brothers, with each stick sticking out at uneven angles from his clutch so that the size of the stick could not be determined.
“Here goes nothing.” Whispered Poseidon as he reached his hand out and plucked a stick from Zeus’ grasp. He gently tugged it out of his hand and held it up for all three to see.
“The seas.” Proclaimed Zeus, happy that it was not the Heavens.
Hades chuckled to himself as Poseidon tossed the stick onto the ground. “I guess I can learn to like the water…but it makes my skin so pruned!”
Hades rubbed his hands together feverishly as he reached out to grab a stick from Zeus. He grabbed a stick and pulled it out quickly. His expression instantly changed from one of excitement and eagerness to one of extreme dread and resentment.
“The Underworld!” Hades said irritably breaking the tiny stick in two and tossing it. “I’m scared of the dark. Poseidon, want to trade with me?”
Poseidon sniggered. “No way. I don’t want to be a hermit living underground with all the stiffs. Besides, I’m claustrophobic, remember?”
Zeus was smiling happily to himself. He was left with the Heavens.