He fell from the sky to the sea. The stories tell that he fell because the wax on his wings melted.
I saw those wings, and I saw him moments before he spiralled down to meet Poseidon and the nymphs. The wax hadn't melted, the gods were too wrapped up in their own affairs to notice, and he certainly didn't fall because he hadn't listened to his father. To tell the truth, Ikaros was one of the most naively respectful sons that ever came into existence- even when he later discovered what had been the real reason for Daedalus leaving Athens, all he wanted was to become a great man, just like his father. With the obvious improvements of not being a homicidal megalomaniac, and actually giving a damn about how much harm, or good, his creations caused.
Excuse my bitterness; I have a slight tendency to be discriminatory towards people who think that the only things that are important are going on inside their own heads. Just like my predilection for despairing of people who take things at face value, (my sisters always suggested that I was too analytical,) and who assume that they are always presented with the complete story.
You know, it never ceases to amuse me how much people will believe if you present it in just the right context.
Take the story of the Trojan War for example. The Greeks attacked the Trojans, won via a rather ingenious plan composed by Odysseus. The focus is generally placed on the cleverness of Odysseus, but I have always wondered about the gullibility of the Trojan rulers.
They had been warring with the Greeks for ten years, and yet they honestly believed that suddenly the Greeks were gone forever, and that the big wooden horse was an offering to Poseidon.
Not that I have much fellow feeling for the Trojans, as I supported the other side in this conflict for many various reasons. Including the fact that although Priam must have been a wonderful father, (he did protect his son Paris, despite the fact that he had done an INCREDIBLY stupid thing that put them all in jeopardy,) he loved his family more than the people whose well-being he was responsible for. Not necessarily a bad thing, until he had a choice between the wellbeing of his son and his city. Then suddenly, family solidarity wasn't such a fine trait after all. Thousands of dead and dispersed Trojans are more than enough evidence of this.
And don't even get me started on those ridiculous insinuations about Calais and Zetes chasing me and my sisters away from poor blind King Phineus. You don't seriously believe that my cousins would even dream of hurting us? We're the storm winds! The snatchers! Zeus' Hounds! They wouldn't dare!
Let me break this down for you. Bloody Jason and his bloody Argonauts come waltzing in to the little Aegean island where my sisters and I were following our job descriptions, i.e. tormenting once-King Phineus, a man who in a fit of jealous rage had blinded all of his sons by stealing/spoiling (the suggestion that we would shit in said food is mildly amusing, but come on, as vassals of the Parthenon my sisters and I had a little more decorum than that).
Oh, and the reason for the jealous rage? Phineus decided to cast aside his lovely wife Kleopatra (no, not the one who bonked Romans, she came a couple of centuries later,) in favour of (the ultimate insult) a younger, less assertive woman. And when I say younger, I mean that his eldest son was her senior by a good three months. Disgusted yet? It gets better.
Darling Phineus, about three months into his marriage with wife number two spotted his eldest giving his new stepmother an appreciative look. Apparently it hadn't occurred to him that his teenaged son might be tempted by his teenaged, beautiful stepmother. So, in order to nip this concept in the bud, Phineus ordered all of his sons to have their eyes put out.
Pardon me and my sisters for following Zeus' orders to torment this foul fool with more than a degree of relish.
In any case, the story goes that Jason set our winged cousins, the sons of the North Wind Boreas on us, and so we buggered off with our feathery tails between our legs.
Oh please. There might be an ongoign feud between the storm winds (my sisters and I) and the trade winds (Boreas and his brothers) but even aside from having Zeus' patronage, us air immortals have a tendency to do each other the professional courtesy of staying the hell out of each others' business. Ships at sea are fair game, but Zetes and Calais know better than to interfere with any assignments from the Olympians.
Besides, Kleopatra, Phineus' first wife, was their sister! You don't honestly believe that they would advocate for the mutilator of their nephews do you?
But I digress.
Perhaps what I am truly angry about isn't so much the people, more the tales that they are told. Because words can be misleading, and as each person adds their own embellishments, the stories grow wilder and wilder, until even the grain of truth that was there at their genesis has been eaten away by the voracious rat that is human's need to improve on everything that they come across, be it physical or metaphysical.
There's a reason why telling stories is a euphemism for telling lies.
But that is not the reason why we tell them.