Miss Marble, a witch, at 46 Grimace Street, was sitting on her front veranda with her long-time friend and neighbour Mansur Stigglefod taking in the afternoon and casting an eye over her garden.
Life had been so busy of late what with the advent of on-line ordering, Miss Marble found herself working long hours. “Who’d a thought,” she contemplated, there would be orders coming over the internet.
The two old friends were enjoying a cup of Miss Marble’s relaxing tea which had the effect of relaxing you in a very literal sense. It was Mis Marble who made the remark about her garden being in urgent need of a good weeding and the shrubs in need of some serious pruning.
‘That plant in the corner,” said Mansur, “there’s something about it. It always looks so malevolent whenever I look at it.”
“That’s because it is,” replied Miss Marble, “it’s a ‘florius horribilius’, or a Horror Plant. Most people don’t grow them because they are generally horrible to anyone who goes near them. They emit a scent which likens them to the plant version of a skunk.”
“So why do you have one?” asked a curious Mansur.
“The flowers are essential in my “Chirp” potion.”
“Chirp potion?” queried Mansur never having heard of such a thing.
“A good ‘chirp’ potion is used to buck a person up, make them feel good, industrious, give them a positive outlook, that sort of thing.”
“How does the horrible plant help in that you’d think it would do the opposite?”
“There’s an ingredient in the flower that contains the necessary chemical.”
“How do you get near it to take a flower?”
“Oh, I do it in the middle of the night. The plant sleeps at night and even when awake can’t emit any scent without light to generate it. So, I venture down, speak nicely to it and even though I can tell its grumbling about what I am doing it can’t do anything to stop me. But my actions do explain why it looks unhappy whenever you look at it.”
“It’s a beautiful flower though,” said Mansur as she observed the purple and yellow hue of the flower.
“Oh, it’s gorgeous,” agreed Miss Marble, “I’ve learned to make sure I’m wearing a mask when I extract what I need from the flower as it can send out a foul aroma once the flower is disturbed.”
“You’ve an interesting garden, haven’t you,” said Mansur looking left and right. There were she observed a number of unique looking plants scattered about the yard and one in particular encased in a concrete pot stood tall and erect as if proud of his phallic shape.
“The penis cactus,” said Miss Marble, “a paradox within the plant world, all shape but little else.”
“A real disappointment then,” suggested Mansur.
“Well, most are,” replied Miss Marble sipping her tea.