There are four brothers. They struggle to get along with each other, due to more than a little sibling rivalry. Three of them like to cause trouble. These three are selfish and annoying to humans and gods alike. They like to hide things from the sun, whose name is Sol. The three are very jealous of Sol. They think that they exist purely to keep Sol from comforting the earth and its inhabitants with his warming rays of light. Sol despises the three troublemakers, and openly favors the fourth brother. Sol knows how the earth, plants, animals, insects, and most people respond to his warm presence when the three annoying brothers are resting.
The four brothers have names, and each does something different. Of the three who cause problems, each believes his importance is greater than any of the others, and greater than Sol’s. Only one brother seems to have a workable relationship with the sun. Because he works so well with him, Sol overlooks the mischievousness of the fourth brother.
Boreas is the north wind. While he can be out causing problems at any time of the year, his favorite season is winter. He is cold, icy, and wild. Boreas has a reputation for causing trouble and making a mess. He is a bully known for pushing the other three brothers around, especially Notus.
Notus is the south wind. He pushes back on Boreas’ bullish winds, often making things worse for the earth and its inhabitants. But he doesn’t care. Notus is a wet wind. He carries large drops of water in his beard which he rains down onto earth when he chooses. He is sometimes careless. Boreas sneaks under him and freezes his rain, sometimes just as it falls, causing havoc on the earth. At other times the north wind pushes back, causing violent destructive storms. This embarrasses Notus, but Boreas thinks it is funny. To confuse his brothers, especially the irritating Boreas, Notus sometimes spreads fog over the land and sea.
Eurus, the east wind, is foolish and lazy. He seldom does anything, preferring the amusement of watching the conflicts arise between his brothers. When he is bored, he teams up with Boreas to create problems and confusion. Together they make a north and east wind, known as a Nor’easter. Eurus watches from the comfort of his room and laughs at the chaos he creates with his brother. He is the most evil of the three problem winds.
The fourth brother is Zephyr, the west wind. He is the only brother honored by humans. They call him by his name — not so for the other three. To humans, “Zephyr” is a gentle breeze. He is a soft, dependable wind. Zephyr is loved by all inhabitants of Earth, be they human, animal, or plant. Sol is fond of him because Zephyr makes it possible for him to do his job. When the sun does his job too harshly, Zephyr pleases the people and animals by cooling them with a gentle breeze.
Zephyr enjoys seeing humans smile as he touches them, blowing into their faces, caressing their bodies, and messing up their hair. Often, after his brothers make a mess, Zephyr works to clean things up. He sweeps the sky clean of clouds so that Sol can warm the people, melt the frozen ice and snow, and dry the soil. Plants can grow, people can honor the sun, and animals can forage among the plants. Life goes on.
The inhabitants of Earth understand that they must deal with both Boreas and Notus. They have little use for the east wind, Eurus. Their favorite is the one whose name they know and use: Zephyr. As they watch and feel him at their back, they see the night fade as Sol rises in the east. Then, at the end of a day, feeling gentle breezes on their faces, they watch the return of night as Sol sets in the west. Every day, they love the work of Zephyr and Sol.
So ends the story of the four winds, the sun, and the 2016 a-to-z blog challenge.