You’ve surely heard that when you do a good deed for a goldfish, it offers you three wishes. Well, that’s what happened to Casimir the duckling as well. Are you interested in his story? Let me tell you.
On a beautiful, sunny morning, Casimir the duckling went to swim in the nearby lake with his siblings. The sun was shining so brightly that it was clear that it would be a hot day, so there was no question about their plans for the day: their mother would teach them how to catch fish.
You should know that Casimir was the smallest, so he always swam at the back, and his siblings didn’t pay much attention to him. They treated him as a little one, and so he felt that they didn’t truly love him.
They set off, swimming in a neat line behind Mother Duck. She caught fish one after another, and they, a bit clumsily but very enthusiastically, tried to imitate her. It’s no wonder, because catching fish is not easy: they slip, wriggle, and do everything they can to avoid being caught.
But Casimir the duckling succeeded. Suddenly, he had a beautiful, shimmering, golden-orange fish in his beak. Casimir was very happy and was swimming quickly to Mother Duck when the fish spoke:
- Release me back into the water! You’ll see, good deeds will be rewarded!
Casimir was surprised because he thought fish couldn’t talk. He had mixed feelings: on one hand, he was very hungry and would have liked to eat his first catch, but on the other hand, he felt sorry for the fish. So he decided to let it go back into the water.
The goldfish didn’t swim away. It poked its head out of the water and said:
- Thank you for sparing my life. You’ll see, your kindness won’t go unrewarded! Make three wishes, and I will grant them.
The fish then swam away. Casimir the duckling spent the whole day thinking about what to wish for. He wanted so many things but didn’t want to waste his wishes.
By evening, he had fallen asleep. Hours passed, and he suddenly woke up to a strange noise in the night. He listened, trying to figure out what it was. Oh, he noticed the reflection of the moon in a fox’s eyes. Indeed, the cunning predator had set out to hunt, and they were his prey.
Casimir didn’t hesitate to make his first wish:
- I wish the fox won’t eat us!
The next moment, the fox stepped in the wrong place and fell into the lake. The water swept him away, and since he could hardly swim and didn’t like water, he was very tired by the time he got to the shore. He lost his appetite for hunting.
The next day, the duck family went swimming. Suddenly, a big storm arose out of nowhere, and his siblings got lost. Only little Casimir stayed with his mother. Mother Duck was terrified, but Casimir said:
- Mom, yesterday I caught a goldfish that promised to grant me three wishes. I already made one when the fox fell into the water. Now I wish that my siblings will be found.
The storm clouds quickly vanished, and they saw their lost ducklings. They were overjoyed to see each other. When they got home, they noticed that their carefully built nest by the reeds had been destroyed by the storm.
Casimir the duckling spoke:
- My third wish is to have a beautiful, comfortable nest again.
In an instant, there appeared a nest twice as large, very safe, and impervious to even the strongest storm. Moreover, the fox wouldn’t notice it.
Mother Duck’s eyes welled up with tears. She was so proud of her son that she couldn’t speak at first, but then she gathered herself and turned to Casimir:
- My son, I am very proud of you. Yesterday, you did a good deed for the goldfish, and it rewarded you. But you didn’t use this wonderful opportunity for yourself, you helped our family all along. This kind-heartedness is rare. In one day, you saved us three times. Know that I will always be grateful to you.
His siblings swam over as well, and they all embraced Casimir together with their mother. And without even having to wish for it, a fourth wish came true for him: he knew that they loved him very much and that they could always count on each other.