Witch trials are common enough in the Kingdom and few who stand accused have any hope of escaping the hangman, despite the fact that it is rare for the accused to have any real magical power, malign or otherwise.
Intrigues and adventures within the glittering courts of the land’s nobility: A collection of Tales of Adventure
The accepted mode of getting otherwise unobtainable information is to go visit the cranky old hermit living in the mountains. It's just the sensible thing to do. So, naturally, everyone takes their monthly excursion to the hermit's hovel to consult him on everything, from lock-jaw to lovesickness, necromancers to nasal viruses.
Now, if everyone's always visiting the poor old hermit, there's going to be an enormous queue... "Wellcome to the Hermitt's Hovele, Please Take Ye a Number and Have Ye a Seate" reads the sign outside the packed dwelling.
Imagine the poor hermit, having retreated into the mountains to escape this precise situation...