This should have been another short story outline, but there isn’t really a story to it yet… *pokes*
Rough, rough, rough…
The Goose Girl and the Wizard
Once there was a goose girl who lived in a small town and was quite content with her life. She bred geese for meat and geese for guards and even decorative geese for nobles in the nearby baronies.
Then one day a wizard moved into the house beside the hill.
Now the hill wasn’t really a hill, it was what was left of a tower that had long ago collapsed and had been overgrown. But it looked like a hill if you squinted and the townsfolk were rather unimaginative. And it beat calling it ‘the old tower that fell down and is now overgrown’. But there were stories that a wizard had lived there before and it was the likely cause of the wizard that lived beside it now.
Now the goose girl was wary of wizards, because they had a bad rep in the little kingdoms (and because geese, as a rule, reacted badly to magic). So she left him alone, unlike most of the townsfolk, who wanted various magical favors.
After a bit he stopped by the goosery to see why she was the only one in town avoiding him. He wasn’t a particularly social wizard, but it put his nose out of joint to be blatantly ignored. He rang the bell at the gate, and was promptly charged by the two grey guard geese when they caught the whiff of magic seeping from his robes.
Now as everyone knows, geese are immune to magic, so the goose girl just smiled quietly to herself and kept on working. After a bit the wizard went away again, slightly bruised and in a bit of a poor temper.
It wasn’t until she heard he’d turned poor aunt anthalia into a dog that she finally paid a visit to the house beside the hill.
“you turned my aunt into a dog!” she yelled, as soon as he’d opened the door and he yelped and stumbled backwards into the room. (because wizards are easily startled, you know) “turn her back at once!”
The wizard collected himself (as best he could) and stood up again, brushing the fur from his robes. “no.”
Truth be told, the goose girl wasn’t expected to be told no. Most of the time when she demanded something folks gave in. Ever since she was little she’d had a way of badgering folks until they gave up, and most of the town had learned it was easier to let her win right off (as long as it wasn’t important). So she put on her most disapproving frown and tried again. “why not?”
“because she asked me to.” he straighten his glass and adjusted his wizard’s cap (which was more of a beret than a cone, but the goose girl supposed styles might have changed since the last wizard) “and I don’t break my promises”
“She. Asked. Me. Too.” and he managed to make it sound like she was three and asking why she couldn’t have cookies for breakfast, and that just frustrated the goose girl to no end.
“No I’m not. Ask her yourself.” he pointed to the brown dog who was napping beside the fireplace, and was apparently responsible for the rather copious amounts of fur in the house.
“Aunt Anthalia?” and the goose girl was pretty sure he was having one over on her, but wizards were notoriously bad at humor.
“Yes deary?” the dog yawned and then looked up at her with a wag. “oh, you’ve come to visit! How lovely.”
“Aunt Anthalia, did you ask him to turn you into a dog?”
“Why of course dear, what a silly question.”
“I’m old, dear heart, and what does it hurt to spend my last years in comfort rather then in pain?”
“I told her she could live here,” the wizard offered, “unless you’d rather have her. She hadn’t any other relatives to stay with.”
Which was true, of a sorts. There was always Aunt Magnolia, but Aunt Anthalia had sworn never to speak to her again after the apricot pie incident. And besides, the goose girl had no room for a dog.
So she left her aunt at the wizards house and was slightly more friendly to him after that, but she still let the guard geese chase him every so often, just to remind him where he stood in the grand scheme of things.