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Conrad is a member of Bayern's Own and is its best grappler. He is friends with Ani, Geric, Razo, Enna, Finn, and has a crush on Rinna.

Biography Edit

Forest-born Conrad, the youngest of seven siblings, took a job in the city as a goose boy, presumably to send money back home to his large family. He and another goose boy took charge of fifty geese, but when the other boy couldn't handle the feisty birds and chose instead to work with the pigs, he left Conrad to deal with fifty geese on his own. Finding himself rather outnumbered, he requested to have another goose worker to help him.

The Goose Girl Edit

Conrad is introduced to the new goose girl, Isi, on her very first day on the job. Though somewhat testy because some of the other workers are good-naturedly teasing him of having finally found a lady friend, he shakes Isi's hand and warns her carelessly that the geese practically bit the knees off the last goose boy, so she'd better watch it. Only a few minutes later, a goose tries to attack her before Conrad snatches it with his crook. Rolling his eyes at her incompetence, they continue to the goose pasture. Isi notices that three geese seem to be missing, though she's certain none got away, but Conrad does not seem concerned. In fact he answers defensively, reminding her that he's been trying to wrangle fifty birds all alone for a week and that he'd like to see her do better.

As the days pass, he notices Isi is apparently trying to honk like a goose and mocks her for it. When they and their gaggle approach a pair of feral street cats, Conrad merely stands back to watch the spectacle. But before any geese get injured, Isi honks out a warning, causing the birds to go into a defensive huddle, and then snaps at Conrad that he could have warned her instead of wanting her to sacrifice a goose just to see her be incompetent. Conrad angrily retorts that if she's so much better at goose-keeping she can jolly well carry on. For the rest of the day, the goose boy stays on the far side of the pasture, out of her sight.

Weeks later at the Wintermoon festival, Conrad joins fellow animal workers Enna, Razo, Bettin, and Isi to see the sights. He and Razo are entranced by the javelin dancers, a ceremony that bequeaths Bayern boys a javelin and shield, marking them as members of the community. The boys must dance blindfolded within a sharp ring of javelins in the square known as the Thumbprint of the Gods. Its honorable if the boy survives the dance untouched, but they're given a javelin and shield anyway unless they die. Razo and Conrad stare with starry eyes, declaring that they'd do the dance right there and then if it earned them a javelin. Unfortunately, the prejudice against Forest folk prohibits any Forest boy from even trying.

As the winter days slowly melt into spring, Conrad becomes noticeably jealous of the goose girl. As the youngest of seven siblings, the flock is all he's ever really had to himself, but this new girl is taking it away from him. He tries to mock her in front of the other workers by telling them that she thinks she can speak goose, but instead of ridiculing her, they ask her for advice with their own avian problems. With each question, Conrad grows more and more sullen. Although the goose boy usually visits with friends in other pastures or wanders in the nearby wood, this time, he stays close and watches her distrustfully. He later tells Razo that she's not normal, what with her honking like a goose and staring at the stuffed horse head mounted above the pasture gate as if speaking with it, but Razo carelessly shrugs off his concerns because he believes Conrad's just jealous of her goose-keeping skills.

The next day, Conrad secretly follows Isi to a small copse of trees, where she takes off her hat and lets the wind dry out her hair. Her long, blonde, definitely-foreign hair. Shocked, he calls her a yellow girl aloud, causing her to whirl around and hastily tuck away her hair, but Conrad knows what he saw. He can hardly believe that the beloved goose girl, who is so much better at goose-keeping than he is, isn't even Bayern. He can't wait to reveal her secret to the other workers and runs off to think of the best way to do so.

That night amidst a light snowfall, the workers gloomily contemplate the rest of the winter, exchanging stories about their struggling families in the Forest. Isi is asked what her family sells, and she replies that she doesn't know what they're doing now. Conrad laughs roughly at that and scorns her answer, attracting the attention of everyone in the hall. Conrad relishes the attention and continues to mock her, saying that she's not from the Forest or even from Bayern. He declares triumphantly that he's seen her hair and knows that she's a yellow girl, the one the Kildenrean guards are looking for. Enna breaks the tense silence by telling him to shut up, but he counters that she doesn't know what he does; he's seen proof. Enna snaps that she has too and so he should shove his jealousies where the sun doesn't shine. His face as red as a sunburn, Conrad slams his fist on the table in frustration. Razo and Beier gently but firmly hold his arms as he challenges Enna to make Isi remove her headscarf and prove that she's Bayern.

Enna sadly explains to the hall that Isi's hair got burned off in a fire before she came to the city, and she's not going to embarrass her just to set Conrad straight. The workers study their potatoes with sudden interest, but Conrad is furious. He knows she's lying, but he can't prove it without a scuffle. He swears to prove that Isi's foreign, but no one responds. Angry that no one believes him, he stomps off in a huff.

Throughout the next few days, Conrad is determined to snatch a strand of Isi's exotic blonde hair as proof of her foreignness. He blocks her path and demands a strand of her hair, but she refuses, apologizing for not being able to tell the others the truth, but promising that she'll be leaving soon anyway. He leaves her alone, but the next day he secretly follows her to a small copse of trees where she lets her long hair loose. He quietly tries to pluck one of her hairs, but a sudden gust of wind knocks his favorite orange cap off his head and he's forced to chase it down. By the time its firmly back on, Isi's hair is firmly tied under her hat. She gives him her raisin bun that evening in an attempt to make amends, but although he accepts the treat with a kind of acknowledged defeat, he refuses to give up.

Two months after Wintermoon, Conrad looks up at the sound of forty-eight geese huddling together and catches sight of five men, each carrying a sack or a pole tipped with a wire loop, perfect for stealing geese. Conrad immediately slips through the pasture gate to find help, but by the time he returns with three other workers they find only Isi and her untouched flock. But to Conrad's intense relief, they also find evidence she was attacked: the goose thieves' abandoned sacks and poles, a bruise on Isi's throat, and her crook broken in two. Somehow, she managed to fend off five-fully grown thieves single-handedly. The would-be rescuers pick up her broken staff in amazement and leave to report the event to Mistress Ideca, but Conrad lingers behind. Isi thanks him for getting help, mentioning that she thought he abandoned her. His pride stung, Conrad swears that he's no coward; he would've faced the thieves down.

Later that night, Isi refuses to talk about what happened, leaving her would-be rescuers to tell their much-embellished version to the hall as Conrad sulks in the corner. Some workers are sent to retrieve the tools the thieves left behind for souvenirs, but they return with the palace pageboy Tatto instead. The young pageboy grandly proclaims that the king wishes to thank those involved with the protection of his geese, but for some reason, Isi is very reluctant to go. Only when Conrad agrees to accompany her does she accept the summons. However, when they've walked a few blocks she insists that Conrad go alone and take all the credit for himself. Although bemused at her apparent nervousness, he doesn't care enough to actually ask why and merely shrugs, following Tatto to the palace. Once there, Conrad realizes that he can prove Isi's heritage once and for all by simply telling the Kildenrean guards that she's the yellow girl they've been looking for. He does exactly that, hoping that they'll take her away and not only prove her foreignness, but also have his flock back to himself.

Later that evening, Tatto and Conrad return to dine with the workers and gossip about the rumors of war plaguing the palace. Tatto reveals that the princess sent from Kildenree to marry the Bayern prince told the king that she really was sent as a kind of decoy to pretend all is well. In reality, Kildenree is plotting an attack on Bayern. However, the princess has grown to like Bayern and does not wish to be a part of her country's deceitful ways. Tatto declares that the king is outraged and has decided to crush Kildenree in a preemptive strike as soon as the mountain passes are cleared of snow. Conrad is surprised that Isi is horrified, figuring that she either genuinely doesn't know about her own country's plans or is pretending that she doesn't for some reason.

That very night, Conrad and half the settlement hear a racket of angry geese and spot Isi running for her life from a large man named Ungolad chasing her. Enna leads a large segment of the workers after them, but they lose sight of the two in the nearby woods. Faced with everyone's questions, Enna reveals to everyone that Isi is truly Princess Anidori-Kiladra of Kildenree. She was sent to Bayern to marry their prince, but on the journey half of her escort mutinied. They killed the other half and tried to kill Isi too so that they could replace her with her lady-in-waiting, Selia, but Isi managed to escape and has been hiding as their goose girl ever since. Conrad is horrified that he lead the Kildenreans straight to Isi; he genuinely had no idea that they would try to kill her. For days, Conrad is consumed with guilt that Isi may very well have been murdered and it's all his fault.

Soon after, the prince's upcoming wedding to the Kildenrean princess is announced and the whole city has a week-long holiday. Freed from work but having nowhere to go, Conrad joins the rest of the workers in the dining hall. Suddenly, Isi herself walks in the door, accompanied by Finn and a Kildenrean man loyal to Isi named Talone. As soon as the room catches sight of Isi, everyone rushes to hug her and congratulate her on being alive except Conrad. Ashamed to face her, he remains huddled in a corner. However, Isi catches sight of him and, at long last, gives him a strand of her hair. Staring at it, Conrad holds back tears as he admits that he revealed her location to the Kildenrean guards, but stressing that he never thought that they would try to kill her. Ani forgives him and apologizes for lying about her heritage. Reminded of her deception, she asks the workers why they all seem to readily believe that she is a princess and is touched when they frankly reply that they know her; she's their friend. Before she even has a chance to beg their help, everyone including Conrad is already determined to join her quest.

Leading her group to the palace, Isi gains an audience with the previous prime minister Odaccar, who is now retired. He writes a very official note for the stable-master so they can get horses for their journey. They manage to acquire about a dozen horses, but not many animal-workers can ride. Those who can, including Conrad, are chosen to accompany Isi all the way to Lake Meginhard, where the wedding is to take place. After a few days' journey they arrive at the manor, but are stopped by the king's guards. They insist that the princess see the king alone, forcing Isi's escort to remain outside. Nevertheless, they eventually gain access to the manor just as Selia and Ungolad's treachery is revealed to the King of Bayern. Ungolad attempts to kill Isi, but Talone bursts in the nick of time, distracting Ungolad by challenging him to a duel. Talone fights the vicious, maddened Ungolad as the workers rush into the room to help the king's guard fight the Kildenrean traitors.

In the chaos, Conrad notices Selia slip through the secret passageway and chases after her, managing to grab her by the hair before she escapes through a window. He drags a struggling, screaming Selia back to the throne room by her hair, ignoring her vicious scratching at his hands. By the time he returns, the battle is over and the floor is covered in Kildenrean bodies. The Bayern soldiers quickly take the murderess from him as the king sentences her to the very execution for treason that she devised for Isi: to be dragged along the streets in a barrel full of nails. As the soldiers carry a panicking Selia away, Conrad proudly tells everyone how he caught her trying to escape. When Isi introduces him to the king, Conrad instinctively hold out his hand to shake, but quickly drops it and bows awkwardly instead, insisting that Isi is the real yellow lady. Isi playfully knocks his cap off with a breeze, gently praising him when he looks at her in alarm.

The next day, Conrad is summoned to the dining hall where he is officially given a javelin and shield. As Conrad takes his place among the newly formed hundred-band made up of the Forest folk, he remains calm with only a small smile hinting at the enormous contentment within. Some days after the celebration, Conrad attends the wedding of Isi and Geric in the Thumbprint of the Gods, a public square that allows anyone, noble or commoner, to attend.

Trivia Edit

  • Conrad is never without his orange cap.
  • He has an extremely freckled face.

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