The Wee Free Men

Terry Pratchett

Armed only with a frying pan and her common sense, Tiffany Aching, a young witch-to-be, is all that stands between the monsters of Fairyland and the warm, green Chalk country that is her home.

‘Witches are naturally nosy,’ said Miss Tick, standing up. ‘Well, I must go. I hope we shall meet again. I will give you some free advice, though.’
‘Will it cost me anything?’
‘What? I just said it was free!’ said Miss Tick.
‘Yes, but my father said that free advice often turns out to be expensive,’ said Tiffany.
Miss Tick sniffed. ‘You could say this advice is priceless,’ she said, ‘Are you listening?’
‘Yes,’ said Tiffany.
‘Good. Now… if you trust in yourself…’
‘Yes?’
‘…and believe in your dreams…’
‘Yes?’
‘…and follow your star…’ Miss Tick went on.
‘Yes?’
‘…you’ll still be beaten by people who spent their time working hard and learning things and weren’t so lazy. Goodbye.’

This time it had been magic. And it didn’t stop being magic just because you found out how it was done.