A story from the 1986 Dungeons & Dragons annual.
It had promised to be another hot and sunny day, but then quite suddenly an icy wind blew, clouds began to gather, and before long the adventurers found themselves caught in a heavy snowstorm.
Not too far away they could see a large house standing out sharply against the falling white snow. Already they felt numb with cold. They would have to ask for shelter, so they made their way towards the house.
As they got nearer they saw that it was a crumbling ruin; to call it a house would be a gross exaggeration. The stonework crumbled, the woodwork was rotten, and the windows cracked. But a dim yellow light shone from the dirty downstairs windows and thick black smoke poured from a tall chimney, so someone didn't mind living there.
Grasping his cold iron shield between numb fingers, Eric banged it hard against the door. after a few minutes a very old, wrinkled woman appeared at one of the lighted windows. She smiled, showing rotten teeth, and shouted in a weak voice, "I'll be with you in a minute."
"I've changed my mind. I'm not staying here," said Eric. "Let's go before she comes."
"Okay, you go if you want to," said Hank impatiently, "but we're staying here."
Eric, who had been in a bad mood all day, went off into the storm alone.
Moments later the heavy door creaked open and a well worn face popped out from behind it.
"Hello, my dears. Do come in," said the old woman, as though she had known them a lifetime. "Gorgeous weather we're having, isn't it?" The children thought she was being sarcastic at first, but then she said, "What a change it makes from sunshine. For the last 287 years we've had nothing but sun, and that can get very boring, so it's about time we had some snow. What do you say?"
"Well, you could be right," shivered Diana.
"You are cold," replied the old woman. "But I'm not surprised, you are hardly wearing anything at all, my girl! Come and sit in front of the fire with me."
Diana, sitting on a high-backed chair next to the old lady, wondered just how old this lady really was.
"I've been perfecting my 'Cold Spell' for decades and at last it seems to be working," said the old lady with an air of satisfaction.
"Do you mean that you created this snowstorm?" asked Hank incredulously.
"I certainly did!" replied the old lady proudly. "Do you like snow, my dears?"
"Oh yes, I like snow," said Bobby enthusiastically.
A loud knock at the door interrupted the conversation.
"I'll bet that's Eric," said Hank.
"Is that another of your friends, my dears?" replied the old woman. "Quickly then, go and let him in."
Eric was glad to be out of the cold, but the situation which now faced him looked very dangerous. Here were his friends sitting round a fire with a witch! She was so obviously a witch!
He saw her pointed black hat hanging up behind the door, there were shelves of curious-looking bottles, and there was a large cauldron upon the floor. Next to it was a black cat which stared suspiciously at Uni.
The witch chatted on: "You see, the 'Cold Spell' has been my life's work - my ambition. It took my 50 years to discover what were the right ingredients, and then another ten to work out the exact quantities." She paused for a moment. "Is it still snowing?" she asked, and, having instructed Eric to find out, was pleased to hear that already the snow was a metre deep.
Eric muttered to himself, "She's insane, the old witch!" He was quite right in both cases. Fortunately she was also just a little deaf, and didn't hear him. The others had, of course, come to the same conclusion, but no one was sure what to do about it.
"What is the time?" she asked. "At 43½ minutes past two I must add some fog." She squinted at the clock on the opposite wall but the figures were blurry and fuzzy to her tired old eyes.
"It is 2.42 precisely," said Eric, trying to sound like the speaking clock, but she was too old to understand the joke - the telephone hadn't been invented yet in this magical land.
"Oh no! We shall have to be quick," she replied. She got up from the chair, like one half her age, and brought down a large glass bell jar from the middle shelf. It was labelled 'Foggy Weather'.
She opened a valve in the side of the jar and inserted one end of a rubber tube. The other end she put into the cauldron. She consulted her book of spells. It read: Add 475 cubic millimetres of thick fog and stir. Allow the mixture to settle and then add three level teaspoons of snow sorbet...
"Could one of you pass me the snow sorbet, please?" she asked. "It's to the right of the black ice."
Hank was the one to oblige.
"Presto, you should be the one to help - after all, you may learn something," said Sheila sarcastically.
"Our friend Presto is a sorcerer too," said Eric, pushing Presto forward and introducing him to the old woman.
"Oh really? You can help me then. Could you pass me a lump of coconut ice, four centimetres square, please?" replied the witch, reading from her book of spells.
JESUS CHRIST, I CAN'T BE BOTHERED TO TYPE THE REST OF THIS CRAP UP, SORRY.