Earlier parts to the story can be found here:
Mr Marsden looked around to see Ayls Main standing at the door of the container looking innocently at him. This puzzled Mr Marsden as he was certain he had left the gate locked and his keep out potion was in operation.
Ayls was in her school uniform and on her way home.
“How did you get in?” asked Mr Marsden, “I’m sure I left the gate locked.”
“I have a way with locks Mr Marsden,” replied Ayls looking even more innocent.
“I see,” said Mr Marsden immediately aware of what powers Ayls must possess to get past his locks which weren’t like ordinary locks but rather magical locks only opened by a wizard or witch of equal power to his own.
He looked intensely at the small girl who beamed up at him as if she had just read his mind.
Over the scope of his long life, he had heard of people like Ayls, but this was his first encounter with what he was taught were Novitiates. The Novitiates were witches or wizards who as children emerged from their communities and who if discovered early enough could be taught the mastery of spell and potion.
He knew the emergence of a young and powerful witch was always on the cards, but as he hadn’t come across one, he assumed there would be none in his part of the world.
There was a part of him excited by the prospect and another part cringing in the knowledge of what he was seeing before him.
“So, what would you like to talk about?” he asked.
“All this,” answered Ayls, “the container, the magic flowers, you, I want to know all I can as I think I too have some magic too.”
“Indeed,” said a quizzical Mr Marsden. He looked down on the small girl and remembered a time when his father had told him he was destined to be a wizard. He had to confess to himself that he never exhibited the enthusiasm Ayls was showing.
“It’s a difficult journey you will have to take,” he explained. “When did you think you had some magic about you?”
“The day you gave me the rose to take for my teacher. You said it would be the colour I selected but when I got to school it had changed, and when I looked at it wishing it was back as the blood red I had chosen and then it did. I made sure no one saw me before I took it into my teacher. When I went home I tried it with a flower from mum’s garden, it was a yellow kangaroo paw, and I could do the same thing, change it to a red colour. Then I did some experiments with other things, and it frightened me, Mr Marsden, I didn’t and still don’t know what I am capable of.”
“I agree it’s a scary business Ayls, but if you want to learn then I can teach you, and I’m sure along the way you can teach me somethings. Let’s go inside and sit a while and have a chat,” said Mr Marsden leading the way towards his back door. He stepped back to allow Ayls to enter before him and watched as she raised her hand to the door ad it opened. She entered as if that was something she did every day.
“How long have you been able to open doors like that?” asked Mr Marsden.
“Oh, a long time now, I never thought of it as anything special, just something I can do.”
“It’s not anything Ayls, not every young witch can do that without what seems an effort, you do it as if its second nature.”
It was then, as they entered his kitchen that Mr Marsden saw what truly did amaze him.