"That is the self-same eagle who once brought me back to the wild geese," the boy remarked, gazing after the bird in astonishment. The geese had decided to leave the island at dawn, but first they wanted to feed awhile. As they walked about and nibbled, a mountain duck came up to Dunfin. "I have a message for you from your sisters," said the duck.
So he took Dunfin and the goslings along, and made for home. There was not a soul in the barn yard when the goosey-gander came along. He alighted, confidently walked all around the place, and showed Dunfin how luxuriously he had lived when he was a tame goose. When they had viewed the entire farm, he noticed that the door of the cow shed was open.
He placed the dog collar around the neck of the fox, tightening it so that he was securely chained. During all this the fox had to lie still, for he was afraid to move. "Now, Smirre Fox, I hope you'll make a good watch-dog," laughed the boy when he had finished. Friday, May sixth. No one could be more gentle and kind than the little gray goose Dunfin.
From the time they had been little, yellow goslings, their parents and relatives and even the old fisherman had plainly shown them that they thought more of Dunfin than of them. Therefore the sisters had always hated her. When the wild geese landed on the cliff island, Prettywing and Goldeye were feeding on a bit of grass close to the strand, and immediately caught sight of the strangers.
All the wild geese loved her, and the tame white goosey-gander would have died for her. When Dunfin asked for anything not even Akka could say no. As soon as Dunfin came to Lake Mälar the landscape looked familiar to her. Just beyond the lake lay the sea, with many wooded islands, and there, on a little islet, lived her parents and her brothers and sisters.
Yes, there were Akka, Iksi, Kolmi, Nelja, Viisi, Knusi, all the six goslings, the goosey-gander, Dunfin and Thumbietot; but Kaksi from Nuolja, the first left-hand goose, was missing and no one knew anything about her fate. When the wild geese discovered that no one but Kaksi had been separated from the flock, they took the matter lightly. Kaksi was old and wise.
"I don't know what human beings have named it," said Dunfin. "We gray geese call it the 'City that Floats on the Water'." Dunfin had two sisters, Prettywing and Goldeye. They were strong and intelligent birds, but they did not have such a soft and shiny feather dress as Dunfin, nor did they have her sweet and gentle disposition.
"I should have been very glad to remain here with father and mother and you," said Dunfin, "had I not promised the big, white " "What!" shrieked Prettywing. "Are you to have the handsome goosey-gander? Then it is " But here Goldeye gave her a sharp nudge, and she stopped short. The two cruel sisters had much to talk about all the afternoon.
"One of his kind has never before been seen on the island, and, strange to say, he has never attacked one of us geese. But now my intended has made up his mind to challenge him to-morrow morning, and drive him away." "Oh, I hope he'll succeed!" said Dunfin. "I hardly think he will," returned the sister. "If my goosey-gander were as big and strong as yours, I should have hope."
Shame and grief because he was no longer a human being overpowered him. He turned and fled. He knew not whither. But a glad meeting awaited the boy when he came down to the heath. For there, in the heather, he spied something white, and toward him came the white goosey-gander, accompanied by Dunfin.