The Greek Gods Do Christmas

“It’s about time that beardy bastard with the overgrown deer stepped down,” says Zeus. “The mortals have forgotten how to worship us. Especially the Brits and the Americans, and look what’s happened there.” He takes a bite from a roast phoenix leg – zapped, in its prime, by lightning bolt, ash still clinging to a feather or two – and a swig of ambrosia and absinthe, then he holds out a Sistine-Chapel-like finger and strikes Santa dead.

“You do have a point,” says Hera, “though who will take over his duties?”

“Don’t look at me,” says Hermes.

“Never fear, I’ll do it myself,” says Zeus. “Though I could do with a few sacks full of your lovely, colourful scarves.”

“You do realise how much work is involved?” says Hera. “Plus,” she continues, looking at his phoenix-engorged girth, “how will you get down the chimney?”

“Well, Santa was hardly a wisp of a man. And if I get stuck, I’ll turn myself into a swan.”

“Absolutely not, remember what happened last time?”

“We could conjure Sisyphus from the Underworld, he’ll be growing tired of that boulder.”

“Don’t be ridiculous,” says Hera. “People won’t want to wake to the smell of death on Christmas morning.”

“We could just send him to the Trump supporters. They won’t notice.”

“Fair enough. But can you really handle the rest?”

“Of course, dear. You underestimate me.”

“It’s just that you do um have a tendency to get distracted.”

“Nonsense. In any case, the world could do with a few genuine demigods. The ones they fashion for themselves leave a lot to be desired.”

“OK. But no more golden showers.”

“Not even when I’m passing through Moscow?”

“Fine. Let’s do it. Aphrodite can handle the mistletoe. I’ll knit some jumpers. Hypnos will ensure the kids won’t wake. But what will you do for gifts?”

“I was thinking a few olive wreaths, some jars of nectar. A strigil for the sporty ones.”

“Oh, that won’t work at all. They’ll want something more exciting. More dynamic.”

“Miniature lightning bolts for everyone? They do say it’s their constitutional right.”


Michelle Christophorou lives in Surrey, UK and writes short fiction. She was recently a runner up in the Funny Pearls Short Story competition and now thinks she’s funny. Tweets @MAChristophorou 

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