Jasper was considered the simplest of his father’s three sons by the village, not being as witty or clever or strong as they were. But he was a good lad and loved helping on the farm, especially the animals. His elder brothers considered the farm work beneath them, preferring instead to help their father fight back the Grimm beasts. Jasper though was never trusted to try by the village, so he had no idea what it was like though and so was forced to tend the farm while the other men fought back the monsters. One day though, the Grimm threatened to become too much for the tiny village to handle. Now, there had been rumors about a witch (not the kind that had sold their soul for power), somewhere within the nearby forest, who could summon an army to herself when need be. Feeling that such an army would be needed, the father entrusted the matter to his eldest son, as the most fit to take on the responsibility.
Therefore, the eldest packed his things and rode away into the forest. He traveled for a bit, searching this way and that for any sign of the witch and unnerved by the lack of Grimm. Along the way, he came across a forlorn chick who had fallen out of its nest and couldn’t get back up. But he ignored the chick and pressed onward. About mid-day, he came across a rabbit that had been caught in a snare trap. Seeing that it seemed a nice, plump rabbit and not wanting to use food if he didn’t have to, he made a fire with the nearby sticks, choose and prepared one stick to be his skewer, grabbed his knife, then meant to kill the hare and have it for lunch. But a flock of birds suddenly swopped down at his head and he flailed around blindly to knock them away. Then they left as suddenly as they had come and the rabbit was gone. The eldest then simply ate from his pack and spent days continually wandering woods for a sign of the witch’s habitation. But in the end, he had to go back to the village empty-handed. Things had gotten more serious in the mean time, so the father then sent his second son out, but the same fate followed him and he came back empty-handed. The village was now almost at the brink of utter annihilation and no one could be spared from the fight that many saw now as could not possibly be won. Then Jasper declared that since no one had put him in the fight, he could be spared to find the witch. The men laughed, wondering how a mere youth would accomplish what his elder brothers had not. But Jasper said that he would not return until he found the witch and brought back her army. And so, he packed his things and went on his way.
As he rode along, wondering where the witch could be that his brothers hadn’t looked, he came across a forlorn chick that had fallen out of its nest. Feeling pity for the thing, he gently scooped it up and placed it back into its nest. Then he went on his way, curiously noticing the almost shocked expression in the little chick’s eyes as he left. Further on, he came across a rabbit, caught in a snare. Not particularly needing more food and seeing how the rabbit looked so piteously forlorn, he loosened the snare and let the rabbit go. He then rode along, curiously noticing that the shocked expression of the rabbit nearly matched the shocked expression of the chick. Later on, he came across a wolf, with its foot caught in a metal clamp. Jasper took pity on the wolf, prepared bandages, released the wolf from the trap, then was setting to work on tending the wound when the wolf said that that wouldn’t be necessary. As Jasper looked on, the paw healed and the eyes of the chick, rabbit, and wolf became the eyes of a woman, young yet experienced with a tall and stately figure. She explained how others had come for her army in the past, so she had designed the tests, using the shape-shifting power she had kept secret, to make sure those who led that army would not misuse it. Jasper replied that he was only interested in the army to save his village and she said that he was worthy of the power and that she had only held onto it until someone worthy came. She then reached into his soul and allowed it to shield him, searched deeper and found his unique power though what it was is now lost in antiquity, then she gave to him the power to summon animals to himself of any type and size that came from his surroundings and command them to perform whatever task and that no animal would harm him. She then passed out, exhausted by the process. Once again, Jasper took pity on her and didn’t want to leave her alone in the forest while passed out, now that she had abandoned that power. And so, he placed her on his horse and hurriedly rode to town. When he got there, he found that the town was surrounded on all sides and the defenders were losing ground to the monsters.
He summoned the birds of the sky, from the mighty eagles to the numerous starlings, to attack them from above while summoning the wild beasts of the field, the wolves, bears, and boars, to attack the Grimm from behind. The Grimm were then overpowered and the battle was won, though Jasper felt every death that happened among the animals personally and remorsefully. He then sent the creatures back to where they had come and released them, then rode into town and said, ” I promised I wouldn’t come back without the witch’s army and I have kept my vow.” Then he arranged for the witch to have accommodations in the inn until she had fully recovered her strength, which she protested but had to see the wisdom of.
There was much feasting and rejoicing that week for the victory over the Grimm and Jasper was now a hero of the town, who would properly be trained and join as a warrior of the village from now on. Jasper was glad to be thought well off for once, though the women now unnerved him with the way they chased after him the same way they use to chase after his brothers. And he now understand from his weapon training some of the thrill of fighting his brothers had found. But he still liked working on the farm. Also, he always seemed to find an excuse to visit the inn or bump into the witch, who seemed hesitant about leaving town. They often talked though and she even went with him to help with the animals a couple of times. He eventually realized that she was to him the most beautiful woman he had ever seen and had a fine mind to fit it. And so, he proposed and she said yes. They were married by the priest and lived on the family farm since his father had arranged it so that Jasper would inherit the farm since his brothers hadn’t wanted it anyways and had gone out to seek other fortunes. And in the course of time, she gave birth to twins, a boy and a girl. And it was said that the boy received his father’s power upon his death and the girl received her mother’s power upon her death. And that through their lineage (which bore many other legends for other days), the powers were passed on, and that their lines have remained unbroken to this very day.