The Magic of Meridell: A Sit Down with Kayla
Though Kauvara might be the most famous magic potion master in all of Neopia, tucked away in Meridell Castle resides a vibrant red Zafara known as Kayla. The young Zafara does not hail from Meridell, she has called it her home since traveling through a time portal with her friends. Kayla was born in Neopia Central, where she would spend her days hanging around Kauvara’s potion shop. She has always been fascinated by magic and potion making. When she wasn’t browsing the shelves of Kauvara’s Magic Shop, she was reading books on how to brew potions. She idolizes Kauvara; when Kayla roleplays with Lisha, she always pretends to be Kauvara.
Kayla was always one of those kids who knew exactly what she wanted to be when she grew up. There was never any doubt in her mind. When anyone asked, she always said when she grew up she wanted to be just like Kauvara, and that is exactly what she did. Though young, she played a pivotal role on the Meridell-Darigan Wars. King Skarl has even said that without Kayla, he’s not sure what Meridell’s fate would have been. For those of you who do not know, Kayla was the mastermind behind the Turtum’s transformation. She was the one who brewed the potions that turned the Turtums into giants. Without these giant turtums, Kass’ war machines may not have been defeated.
Post-war, Kayla was able to fulfill her dreams. Tucked away in the Meridell Castle is her own potion shop. Though she sheepishly admits that it is nowhere near as extravagant as Kauvara’s Potions, her dream still came true, nonetheless. At the time of publication, Kayla brews 56 specialty potions.
Hi Kayla, thanks for taking time out of your day to meet with me!
You’re welcome! I’m very excited to be here. Really shows how far I’ve come to land an interview in the Neopian Times!
Well, let's get started then. It’s well known that your idol is Kauvara, can you just briefly talk about how she has impacted your life?
When I was little, my most favorite toy was actually a Kauvara plushie! My mother would always tell me stories about this brilliant potion maker and it just really resonated with me. For as long as I can remember, I have wanted to be a potion maker like Kauvara. There is something so beautiful about magic. It’s not an ability everyone has, so when I found out I had a knack for magic, everything just clicked for me; I knew I was destined to brew magical potions. Perhaps it was because I am from Neopia Central and my proximity to Kauvara’s was very close, but I spent hours in her shop every day, just trying to learn everything I could. Had I not come to Meridell, I would have loved to formally study under Kauvara.
You’ve done well for yourself, even if you never formally studied under Kauvara! Your giant Turtums were a stroke of genius! Can you talk a little bit about the war?
Oh man, I was so incredibly nervous to prove myself. I was a novice at potions back then, really. Coming up with the idea was easy, but the execution was a bit more difficult. Good potions often take a while to brew, and coming up with the correct ingredients when brewing a new potion is immensely difficult. The time crunch put an immense amount of pressure on me, but the gravity of the situation made me try my best. I couldn’t let Meridell down. I had told King Skarl I could do it. I don’t think I got I slept much during the weeks of brewing the potion, but it was all worth it.
After the War, you settled down and opened your own potion shop. Was this the plan all along?
Absolutely. Although I know I could have done other things after the war, I really just wanted my shop. Don’t get me wrong, If a war ever broke out again, I would be the first to offer my services and take a break from the shop. However, my dream has never wavered. I have always wanted a shop of my own. A quiet life in Meridell might not be for everyone, but it is perfect for me.
The potions you sell are quite different than Kauvara’s, was this intentional?
While I love and idolize Kauvara, I wanted to make a name for myself. I love inventing my own potions. One day I aspire to have a collection of recipes as vast as Kauvara, but I am quite happy with my shop as is. Meridell has a lot less traffic than Neopia Central, so I don’t want to try to grow my shop too quickly.
So what is your favorite item you sell?
I love the Powder of Everlasting Wit. It is such an aesthetically pleasing brew. Not every magic item is beautiful, but this one is. Not only is it beautiful on the outside, but its use is beautiful too. It helps grow the mind. While it is not my most popular item, it has a special place in my heart.
Then what is your most popular item, if you don’t mind me asking?
Recently, it has been bubbling fungus. Faerieland supporters have been buying me out. I suppose they were training to fight the Wraiths. I am just glad I could help the faeries out, even if it was indirectly! I would definitely say any of my potions that increase health, strength, or defense are vastly popular. I wish I could perfect my brew so the stat increases were a bit larger and less varied though.
What piece of advice would you give to aspiring magic potion brewers?
Don’t give up! When I first tried making potions, a lot of them didn’t turn out. This was honestly really discouraging seeing as it was my dream to brew the best potions in Neopia. While reading and studying the theory can be immensely helpful, you won’t learn to brew potions unless you go out and try, and embrace your failures. Sooner or later the failures will subside and you’ll be a brewing master.
Thank you for taking time out of your busy day Kayla, before I let you go, any chance we’ll see some new brews in your shop soon?
Maybe…. Maybe not!