The Three Brothers

By Liam Gibson

There once were three brothers in a kingdom lost in distant time. The king of the kingdom was a brave, resilient, intelligent man. One day the king summoned the brothers to his chambers. For he wasn’t long for this world.

Each of the brothers emulated a skill of the king. One brother was courageous. His courage had earnt him many follows in any potential race to become an heir. The second brother was strong. His strength again had earnt him many follows if an heir ever needed to be selected. Though, living in a kingdom the eldest son was the heir of the throne. The eldest brother was a wise man. This wisdom he believed had earnt him few followers. He doubted his own ability to be strong and his own capability to be courageous. He doubted his ability to protect the kingdom in any potential attack from a far and distant enemy.

One day the three brothers were walking along the path away from the kingdom when suddenly they came across a crossroads. The eldest brother knew that these two brothers with their strength would rise to any challenge any of the routes would present. The eldest brother watched as the strong brother walked swiftly straight ahead. Strength oozing from ever muscle in his body. The second brother took left. As the second brother walked expeditiously into the distance the eldest brother noted his courage beaming from his body as a bright light illuminating the path.

The eldest brother, being a wise man had learnt through research that the path straight ahead would lead the strong brother to a large stream with torrents of water charging through the channel. Strewn through the channel were a collection of flattened boulders and overhead were an assembly of branches. In order to cross the torrent, the brother would have to leap and lunge across the fragmented path. The wise brother knew the strength of his brother would allow him too safely cross and this he did.

The next brother bearing left, was faced with a large clump of trees entwined with one another. The darkened forest would surely be home to an array of creatures and existences. This again, the eldest brother knew. Yet again the eldest brother knew that his courageous sibling would make it through the darkened forest without harm. This again was true.

The path bearing right, was in no corpus found within the kingdom’s libraries. The thought of facing torrents of waters from the gushing stream as well as the entangled forest filled the eldest brother with fear and dread. Maybe if he faced the waters and jungles unknown, he could muster the strength and courage needed to cross unscathed. Surely there were reasons for the absence of the right path. As the eldest brother took right, he heedfully paced along the path staying alert to whatever this path would throw at him.

The two brothers who fearlessly marched along the seemingly unknown paths met up a little later that day. They boasted to each other about the volumes of strength and courage they have to show to pass their obstacles. They also jeered at the eldest brother’s incapability to cross either of the perils.

A little time later the eldest brother still continuing gingerly along the right path came across the torrent of water he knew his sibling had faced earlier in the day. Facing the challenge unknown, the brother charged forward like a lion across the fragmented crossing over the river. A little later the eldest brother came across an entangled forest similar to the one the courageous brother had triumphantly conquered earlier. Warily the eldest brother trekked through the mass of entangled woodland. The brother continued on the unknown path until later that evening he was also united with his brothers. The other brothers were eagerly awaiting the eldest brother to remark that the right-hand path was a simple easy route to take, for they believed that he wouldn’t have the strength or courage to face their obstacles. The eldest brother humbly retold the tale of the wise man pouncing like a lion over the fragmented path crossing the river and charging boldly through entangled forest.

After the demise of the king the eldest brother ruled with strength, courage and wisdom successfully for many years. It came a day when the king retold the story to his three sons. “You have everything you will ever need. You just haven’t found it yet”.