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Act III - Birth Of The Demon


Chapter 17: Duel


After ending his first attempt at teaching students about the nature of magic, it was finally time for the practical portion that he had talked about in the very beginning. Harry raised his wand, and gave it a small flick, and like an invisible curtain that had just dropped, the entire room shimmered, revealing twenty duelling courts, each of them barely more than fifteen feet in length. The class looked at him in surprise and awe.

He smirked. Maintaining an illusion for that long was difficult, especially when he himself hadn't even been in the room earlier. So instead, he had used Fleur's portable wardstone to empower the illusion spell.

Theatricality and deception, Snape often said, were powerful tools.

And he was quoting Snape now. Maybe he should go get his head checked.

"Duelling courts?" exclaimed Smith. "You're going to make us duel without teaching us anything?"

Harry sighed. Smith might not be Malfoy, but he was just as much of a nuisance. "Because of the erratic nature of the last four years of Defence Against the Dark Arts education, I'm not quite sure about everyone's level of comfort with Defence. Some among you have the benefit of learning at home, so we'll get a better idea of your capabilities with a series of duels."

He pointed at the courts.

"We've forty students in this class. Hufflepuffs, pair up with Slytherins. Ravenclaws, with Gryffindor. All of you will be using spells taught up to fourth year. Disarming or incapacitation will determine victory. The winners of this first round will get a single point each, and will move to the next stage, where the winners get two points each. Win again, and three points, and then we have our final duels. The final winner will get an extra ten points, and a DADA spell of their choice."

Almost instantly, the class buzzed with interest.

"When you say any spell…." began Goldstein.

"I mean any DADA spell. Be it a jinx, hex, curse, or countercurse, it doesn't matter. So long as it isn't anything the Ministry doesn't classify as 'Dark', I will teach it to you. All you've got to do is be the last person standing."

"First day of class, and you're already making us fight each other, Professor Potter?" asked Tracey Davis.

Harry smiled. "This class is about learning to fight, Davis. Make no mistake, Dark wizards do not play 'Let's-throw-jinxes-at-each-other-and-go-home'."

Several people laughed.

"You'd know, wouldn't you?" voiced Malfoy.

"Please raise your hand if you have something to state Mr. Malfoy. " said Harry. "You are correct however. I have faced several Dark Wizards, some truly powerful and some weak minded enough to be Imperiused by them."

Malfoy clenched his teeth.

Ron sniggered and elbowed Hermione, who just scowled.

Harry could already sense the anticipation among the audience. He truly hoped that the points they would win in this round would counter any negativity from earlier. He watched as the students formed pairs with one another. Ron paired up with Lisa Turpin, while Hermione stood next to Sue Li. Knowing her, she wanted to see how she fared against the duellist. Interestingly, Malfoy chose Hannah Abbott, who, from what little he knew, was absolutely abysmal at defence.

Just like the ferret to prey upon someone's weakness and call himself strong.

Surprisingly, Pansy Parkinson stood next to Susan Bones, one of the stronger contenders for the top positions in Defence in their year. Susan had been quite chatty when they shared classes together, and told him how her aunt got her to train against the Auror cadets posted in her manor for security. He wondered if Parkinson was simply ignorant of Susan's ability, or if she truly wanted to test herself against someone strong.

Given her recent and rather abrupt change in behaviour, he wanted to think it was the latter.

Daphne and Tracey had chosen Ernie and Justin respectively, while Parvati and Lavender were facing Corner and Goldstien from Ravenclaw.

"These duels will be a test of your creativity, your imagination, and your knowledge of magical theory. ," said Harry. " Oh, and in case it isn't clear, anyone that casts Dark curses will instantly lose fifty points."

The scowl forming on Malfoy's face was a treat to watch.


Unsurprisingly, it was Hermione versus Sue Li. Sue Li was regarded as the best duellist, and the only one that had reached anywhere significant in the Under-19 Duelling circuit, and almost the entire class wanted to see where exactly she stood compared to Harry's own performance against Malfoy and his ilk.

Hermione was just excited to demonstrate her skill and knowledge of spells against a strong opponent. Her strengths were mostly Transfiguration and Charms, and would probably try to overwhelm Sue with a variety of spells. Sue on the other hand, was probably all about quick reflexes, spell combinations and quick casting.

It would be interesting to see who would prevail.

Harry stood with his back resting against the wall, observing as the two duellists took a measure of each other. The decision to have his class focussed on duelling was not a half-arsed one. He had asked Fleur to set up her TOMB-ward around the duelling arenas Its entire philosophy of redirection of force as well as channelling the power behind the spells to keep the ward in place, while also avoiding errant spells and take a solid beating without having to be repaired for a long while. If the wards survived until the end of the exercise, perhaps he could look into commercialising her ward technology? She would get all the credit, and it would be a damn good investment for him.

"BEGIN!"

Hermione whipped her wand and cast the bird-banishing spell, sending a cluster of angry ravens at Sue, attacking her from different directions. For an amateur, this would've been a dangerous situation.

But Sue Li wasn't a duellist for nothing.

"NEBULUS!" Sue screamed. "VENTUS DUO!"

Harry smiled as the fog-producing spell all but made it impossible for Hermione, and the birds to locate Sue. The Ventus spell took advantage of that, and blasted the birds away, while Hermione tried her best to deflect the wind with a hastily raised shield that did nothing to better her vision. A freezing hex took her off guard and Hermione fell on her butt.

"EXPELLIARMUS!"

And with that, the duel came to an end.

"Good work," said Harry, striding up forward, as Sue vanished the fog with the general counterspell. "One point to Miss Li."

Hermione scowled, and stood up, dusting her robes.

"So," said Harry. "What did we learn from that duel?"

"Sue tricked Hermione," said Lavender.

"Granger was slow," muttered Goldstein.

"Her shield was weak," added Tracey.

"All good points," said Harry. "Miss Granger, your starting strategy was good. Avis Oppugno. Compared to the more standard blasting hexes or cutting curses, the Oppugno series sends a large number of distractions at the opponent. While they're busy with handling those targets, it gives you the chance to cast something quick and unexpected, and take them by surprise. But it didn't work that way. Any ideas why?"

Several people raised their hands in the air.

"Greengrass."

"Granger was more interested in seeing Sue deal with her spell than strike her down. She forgot this was a duel and not a spell demonstration."

Harry inwardly winced.

"Slow reaction time," he surmised. "Anything else? Corner."

"Li wasn't distracted by multiple targets, and she managed to react faster than Granger expected."

Harry grinned. "Exactly. Remember, when facing multiple targets, always go for wide-area spells. Her combination of the fog-charm, and Ventus was a strong combination, deflecting the birds as well as lowering vision."

"Sue cheated!" exclaimed Parvati.

"Did she?" Harry asked.

"Obviously," said the Indian girl. "That freezing hex was obviously something dark. Or else Hermione's shield would've stopped it."

"Bollocks!" said Mandy Brocklehurst. "Protego blocks curses too."

"Have you considered that Granger's shield was simply too weak?" challenged Daphne.

Harry really needed to sit Daphne down and talk about her open antagonism where Hermione was concerned. "We have an interesting conundrum here. Patil says that Li cast a dark charm, while Greengrass claims that the shield was weak in the first place. Which is it?"

"I didn't cast a dark charm," said Sue Li seriously.

"Oh, I know that," said Harry. "Does anyone have the answer?"

"Maybe she silently cast something else?" suggested Ernie.

"A good question," said Harry, turning to Sue. "Did you?"

Sue shook her head.

"Well?" asked Harry. "Any other ideas?"

"She didn't cast the hex on Granger," said Pansy Parkinson of all people. Even Daphne looked at her in surprise. "She cast it on the floor."

"And why would that matter?" asked Hermione, narrowing her eyes.

"Because," Pansy's lips twisted into a smirk, probably at the idea of knowing something Hermione didn't. "The Protego spell does not stop anything that doesn't classify as an attack on your person. Kind of like the paint spells he used on me and Malfoy," she flushed in embarrassment. "She cast it on the floor, and the Protego ignored it."

"Excellent," said Harry, clapping his hands, as Sue Li beamed at her. "Five points to Slytherin for a well-learned lesson. Just for that, I think that duel was worth it."

Pansy flushed and looked away.

Harry didn't notice the odd looks Daphne was giving her former best friend.

"Alright," he said brightly. "Who's going to be next?"


It was the last match for the first round. Daphne Greengrass versus Ernie Macmillan.

"BEGIN!"

She began with stunners. Obviously she really didn't think much of Ernie. Honestly, given her natural affinity with Transfiguration, Harry had expected her to conjure something or at least transfigure something.

"PROTEGO!" Ernie yelled, forming a bright, silvery shield in front of him. It was quite thin and wafery, as far as shields were concerned, and Harry had no doubt that a single blasting curse would shatter it like glass. Following the standard duelling format, Ernie had begun the match with a defensive stance.

That was a mistake.

"LUMOS DUO!" yelled Daphne, unleashing a bright orb of light out of her wand that sailed towards Ernie, blinding him in its dazzling radiance. Daphne thrust her wand forward, and sent a blasting hex directly aimed at his shield. Between trying to shield his eyes from the burning light, and the reaction force from the shattering shield, Ernie staggered back, just in time for Daphne to hit him with a petrifaction hex and it was over.

"Greengrass wins," said Harry proudly, as his betrothed gave him a small appreciative smile in return. The first round of eliminations were finally over, with twenty people moving to the next round. The students were quite excited, and chattering amongst each other, and Harry hoped it would go a long way in establishing his position as a proper teacher.

"Next class, we will be progressing to the next round. Think about what you learned in today's class, study the spells, the theory, why certain spells worked against certain defences while others didn't. Make a note if you want. Formulate your strategies for the next day's duels. Excellent work, everyone."

"Just as expected," said Malfoy. "You clearly have no clue what to teach."

Harry wanted to sigh. At times, he just couldn't understand his obsession with him. Yes, he had rejected his offer of friendship back in the first year but Malfoy acted like a jilted lover unable to deal with rejection. As if….

Harry stilled.

Wait. Could it be that he was right? Draco did prefer to spend his time with Crabbe and Goyle over Pansy. Perhaps….

"Mr. Malfoy," he said with a long-suffering sigh. "I'm getting tired of your constant interruptions. Might I remind you that you've already lost fifty points in one class? If you do not stop, I will double it."

"You can't do that."

He smiled predatorily. "Would you like to find out if I can?"

Draco glared at him.

Harry rubbed the tip of his nose. "Really, Mr. Malfoy, I am getting tired of your obsession with me. It's practically ancient now. I understand that you wanted to be friends with me back on the train, and perhaps I'm reading too much from it, but honestly Malfoy, I don't swing that way."

Laughter echoed throughout the classroom as Malfoy flushed in embarrassment and anger.

"HOW DARE YOU?" His face was absolutely red. "I β€” I challenge you to an honour duel! Right away!"

Harry arched his eyebrow, remembering the 'duel' Draco had challenged him back in first year.

"Please, be serious. Now, if we can return to the class β€”"

"Hah!" Draco spat. "Trust Potter to know nothing about pureblood protocols. As expected of a filthy halfblood."

"Fifty points from Slytherin," said Harry, annoyed. "Stop this right now, or it will be a month of detention for you. And this time, it will be with Mr. Filch."

"What the hell are you doing, Draco?" asked an annoyed Nott. "Have you forgotten how he wiped the floor with your arse the last time?"

"Shut up!" Draco screamed, raising his wand like a sword. "I'm Draco of House Malfoy. I challenge you, Potter, to an honour duel."

"You realise your name literally means 'Bad Faith', right?" asked a smug Daphne. "The irony…"

"Enough, everyone," said Harry, growing displeased. "Stop this argument right here." He exhaled. "Listen, Mr. Malfoy. I'm a Warlock, a student preparing for his OWLs, and newly appointed Hogwarts professor. I do not have the time or the inclination to engage in such pointless pursuits. So I will ask you to step back, and not interrupt this class again. Or else, it won't just be House Points you'll be losing. I will be asking your father to show up, and show him a memory of how his son behaves in class."

He turned to Daphne. "Miss Greengrass, what is he talking about?"

"Something stupid," said Daphne. "An Honour Duel is an archaic way of settling disputes and differences between Houses. A trial by combat to see who's correct, or at least, most committed to their version of the story. If one party refused to take part in the Duel, then they'd automatically be painted as guilty."

Harry's left eye twitched. "That… doesn't even make sense."

Daphne gave him a half-shrug. "I told you, it's an archaic system. Not perfect, but better than entire Houses going to full-out war with each other. It's about the ability to stand by your truth, even when the cost is potential death, demonstrating your conviction. It fell out of practice when the Ministry of Magic established the DMLE through unanimous support from the Wizengamot. Sometime in the sixteenth century, I think."

"So, it's illegal."

She shook her head. "Not illegal. Just an old, obscure loophole in the legal system that some people," she gave Malfoy a dirty glare, "at times, use to sort out things, without involving the DMLE. No matter what happens in an Honour duel, it is agreed upon, supported and enforced by the magic of both parties. And part of that is complete avoidance of any and all DMLE prosecution."

"And if anyone breaks that agreement?"

Theodore Nott laughed. "If that happens, then the guilty party is forever shamed. It is why House Chaput, after breaking the agreement, was given the Cur's Mark, causing them to leave France and settle down in Britain, as House Malfoy."

Every single eye looked at Malfoy, who was currently glaring daggers at Theo Nott.

"What?" asked Nott, as if he hadn't just revealed the greatest embarrassing secret of Draco Malfoy in front of the entire class. Harry wondered if Nott had a grudge against the ferret, or if this was his way of bettering relations with him. Daphne had mentioned Nott's name as one of the Slytherins wanting to meet and discuss the future with him in the upcoming meeting.

"But what happens if Malfoy loses and breaks the agreement again? Will his name change again?" posed Susan Bones.

"Maybe we'll call him House Ferret this time," said Ron.

Everyone snorted loudly at that. Malfoy on the other hand, looked seconds away from exploding. Literally.

"Shut up!" snarled Draco, his entire body shaking. Harry wondered if he was having an aneurysm. "I asked you a question, Halflood. House Malfoy challenges you to an Honour Duel. Does House Potter reciprocate or not?"

"No," Harry said straight away. "If you think I have committed any slight upon your honour, you are free to contact the DMLE. We can solve it like civilised people."

"Shows what you know, halfblood!" Malfoy spat. "You're just afraid of me kicking your arse."

"This is ridiculous!" said Harry.

"What are your terms, Malfoy?" demanded Daphne. Harry looked at her in surprise, wondering why she was even playing into his delusions.

"He defamed me, in front of everyone," snapped Draco. "He cast aspersions on my character and my inclinations. I demand retribution!"

"Such pointless antagonism. He called you out on your stupidity, and you choose to bring your House's honour into this. And to think you dream of being the Head of the Slytherin House Assembly someday," sneered Daphne. "But fine. I'm sure the good professor can accommodate this madness."

Harry became acutely aware of the grin forming on her face.

"So tell me, Malfoy, if he wins, will you accept his aspersions as truth?"

"WHAT? OF COURSE NOT!"

She shrugged. "Then you have it. You have to offer him something if he wins. Unless you don't actually know how honour duels are held."

Draco gritted his teeth. "What do you want, Potter?"

"Do you really want this that bad, Malfoy?" Harry asked, rubbing his temples in annoyance. He could feel a headache round the corner.

"Don't pretend, Potter! I know you! No spells beyond fourth year. You've intentionally kept me from casting the stronger, more powerful spells I know. You might've fooled everyone into thinking you're great, but I know better. You're just a below-average wizard that can't even cast a proper curse. Let me use everything I know, and I'll show you what a Malfoy can do." He paused. "Unless you're scared?"

"Unlike you, it's beneath me to hurl stones at any dog that comes barking. But I suppose this can't be helped." He turned to Daphne. "Miss Greengrass. Mister Nott. You look knowledgeable about these honour duels. What are the rules?"

Nott grimaced. "Everything is allowed, lethal or non-lethal, except the Unforgivables. The duel concludes when the other person either yields or incapacitated, or… dead. Any injury that occurs in an honour duel cannot be held in the court of law, and as the challenged, it is your right to choose the time and location for the duel. Both parties have to agree to the stipulated conditions for victory and defeat."

For the first two seconds after he said that, Harry couldn't think about anything but ending him. Nott had claimed that maiming and death were accepted results of such a duel, and Harry couldn't help but feel like Draco had just handed him a free out-of-jail card. All he needed to do was attack fast, shatter his shields, and use the spells that he cast in his private study every single day. Just the thought of casting Sectumsempra on the ferret, seeing the spell hack through his bones, and drop him like a sack of dead meat would feel extremely fulfilling. All he needed to do was to…

Someone held his hand, and that shook him out of his reverie.

It was Daphne.

Harry felt her eyes on him, and glanced at her face. Her expression was tough to read.

"Are you… alright?"

The girl had wonderful instincts.

Realising he was breathing hard, and that his breath was pluming into frost on the exhale as the instincts of his mutated animagus form was filling his mind with the primal desire to crush this attacker, Harry closed his eyes and fought it down. It was incredibly difficult to stave off that primitive, cold-blooded need for violence with just breathing techniques. So instead, he decided to do what Fleur had taught him about dealing with one's inner monster.

Indulge it. Give it an escape in a direction he could control.

"Fine," he said, his voice colder than usual. "You want to be humiliated so badly, then so be it. I accept your challenge. Right here, in front of everyone. Seeing a real duel would be educational."

Several people snorted at that.

"If you win, I will, of course, seek a formal apology. I will even resign from this post of DADA professor, and claim that you were right. But," his smile widened. "If I win, you shall have to swear an oath that you shall call me Professor, and treat me with every bit of respect that you give to Professor Snape while we are in class. If, even for a moment, you cause a nuisance in my class, ever again, you will give up your status as the Heir of House Malfoy."

"WHAT?"

Harry smirked, twirling his wand. "Surely you didn't think it would cost nothing, Mister Malfoy? You cannot just disrupt my class, challenge me in front of so many people, waste my time, and risk my life on something meaningless. Though, if you'd like to solve things through money, I'm thinking… a hundred thousand galleons, payable from the Malfoy Vaults. Surely the value of the Heir Malfoy's word is worth that much?"

Even Pansy winced at that.

"So what will it be?" asked Harry, smiling at him predatorily. "Do we have an accord?"

Draco clenched his teeth. "Fine. I agree."

"Superb," said Harry. "Let's begin."


Daphne volunteered to referee.

Harry and Draco stood on either end of the duelling platform. Harry had even extended the platform to double size, just to allow poor Draco some wiggle-space, much to his consternation. He could have added a hurtful comment or two about taking pity on him, but decided to be the better man.

He called that diplomacy.

"Wands at the ready," said Daphne. "And three, two, one β€” DUEL!"

Almost instantly, Draco whipped his wand at him, striking hard and fast, unleashing a decent array of cutting and blasting curses at him.. Unfortunately, the fool was yet to learn about spell combinations, and if he did, he didn't display enough comfortability to connect those spells in a singular chain. Instead he chose brute force, hurling one spell after another without any trace of strategy in them. The spells were completely disconnected and at times, had completely opposite wand movements that only increased his net reaction time. Occasionally he'd fumble, or take a deep breath and then proceed to yell loudly as he hurled his next curse, as Harry parried them all without a second thought.

Come to think of it, he could use this duel as a demonstration for what not to do in a fight.

"Notice, class," said Harry. "Mister Malfoy is constantly bombarding me with cutting hexes and blasting curses. It's a basic strategy employed by amateurs when they wish to overwhelm the opponent with sheer firepower. Now, an amateur will probably try to hide behind a shield, and keep draining his power, but as any experienced duellist can tell you…"

He parried the incoming curses without a second thought.

"A well-timed parry will take care of those just as well. In which case, it is the caster, that is Mr. Malfoy, who'll be the one exhausted from all the spellfire."

"SHUT UP AND FIGHT, POTTER!"

"Aggravation is often a good technique to use against your opponent.," said Harry, still in his lecturing tone. " An angry opponent is a sloppy opponent."

"EXPULSO! FURNUNCULUS!"

"Expulso, the explosion curse. One that we learned in our second-year. " said Harry, batting away the latter as he casually dodged the former. "Very dangerous to face, but equally magic-intensive. Make sure never to cast this spell on a friendly, for they might get several injured."

He took a deep breath. "That said, the pimple jinx is a bad touch though. Even if it hits, it doesn't stop them from fighting back. Why would you ever want to give pimples to the one you just injured or possibly killed?"

"STOP PRETENDING I'M NOT EVEN HERE! REDUCTO! SLUGULUS ERUCTO!"

"Mind you, class. Magic is like a muscle. The more you train, the better you get. At the same time, use it too much, and you suffer from fatigue. The stronger your spells are, the faster you reach your limit, and the weaker you get. Always remember, the best way to win a duel is to make sure the other person just exhausts himself before or during the duel. And then, a general disarming charm will do the trick."

"SHUT! UP! POTTER!" Malfoy tried to cast a spell, but the spell fizzled and died the moment it left the wand. He was panting, barely holding himself up, his face all flushed and sweaty.

"As Mr. Malfoy has shown, when exhausted and with lack of focus, your spells end up as shouted words. Makes you look a bit silly, really.."

"SHUT YOUR MOUTH! CONFRINGO!" Draco yelled. "PERCUTIO! ATTERO!"

This time Harry instantly cast a Protego, deflecting the spells, and groaned in disappointment.

"There are people who believe that using an altered variation of a spell to throw your opponent off, is a good idea. Do not be fooled by that. What they don't tell you, is that the altered name also comes with a more complicated and time-consuming wand movement. Honestly, you'd have a better chance at just adding a 'Duo' or 'Maxima' suffix to the standard spell. Makes for faster casting too."

He levelled his wand, and saw Malfoy fumble with his wand and prepare a Protego shield.

"Watch!"

"Reducto Duo!"

The spell smashed through Draco's shield, shattering through it like a war maul through glass. He was bodily lifted up, and sent flying by several feet.

Half the class was openly sniggering now.

"As you can see, if you over exhaust yourself, both your offensive spells and defensive ones become weak, flimsy even. In his current state, Mr. Malfoy could hit me with the reductor curse and it wouldn't even break a finger."

"You…" Malfoy grunted, pushing himself up. He was practically frothing in his mouth now, and given his constant heavy breaths and his drooping shoulders, he was practically out of juice. "You… You FILTHY HALFBLOOD! SANGUINIFERVEO!"

Harry narrowed his eyes. This was the second time Draco had cast the blood-boiling curse. The last time, he had held himself back because apart from it being a public demonstration in front of Umbridge, he had no desire to reveal what he was truly capable of. It helped that he could just counter it with Death. But this time, he was a teacher. This time, it was a show.

Harry didn't shield or parry it. Instead his wand traced a line of pure blackness in the air, and he stabbed the incoming spells with it, making them explode in mid-air. He made two more stabs in the air, and suddenly, Draco was thrown high up into the air, and with a grunt of pain, he landed face-first on the floor. Struggling to his feet, he tried another attack.

"That was the blood-boiling curse for the record," said Harry, his voice colder than usual. "A Dark curse. Mr. Malfoy is lucky that he has the excuse of this being an Honour duel. Any competent Defence instructor should've notified the DMLE when Mr. Malfoy used it for the first time some weeks ago."

Draco meanwhile, had other plans.

"EVERTE STATUM MAXIMA!"

Was that the only spell he could cast with that suffix? Harry wondered, and slashed with his wand again, cutting through the knockback spell in half. He stabbed into the air once, before creating a parabolic curve downward. An invisible fist smashed Draco in the face, and he fell to the floor, only for a second invisible blow hitting him in the stomach like a mallet, throwing him backwards.

"How is he doing that?" asked Parkinson.

"And now," said Harry, taking two steps forward. "It is time to end this."

Draco was almost at the edge of the duelling platform, while he was standing in the middle, watching him get up, and spit in frustration.

"What β€” How're you doing that?" He demanded, his mouth bleeding, as he raised an accusing finger at Harry. "Somebody β€” somebody's helping you!"

"A final lesson before I end this demonstration," said Harry in a ringing voice. "If you lose, then have the guts to accept it. Claiming the opponent is somehow cheating is just bad sportsmanship."

"SHUT UP!" said Draco, frothing and looking absolutely crazed. "DON'T YOU LOOK DOWN ON ME! I AM β€”"

He couldn't finish the sentence, as another invisible mallet hit him, this time in the knee, making him cry out in agony. Harry almost expected him to surrender, but instead, the ferret clenched his wand and went for a binding hex. Or at least tried to, for the spell fizzled right after. Harry snorted contemptuously before a quick flick of his wand disarmed him of his wand, which fell down on the floor, rolling back to him.

Draco caught it.

"You β€” you are cheating!" roared Draco. "Your moves are all gibberish. YOU β€” YOU'RE A CHEATER, POTTER!"

"Draco," snapped Nott. "Don't make a fool of yourself."

"Don't blame him," added Daphne. "He doesn't have the wits to pick his fights. Harry used deflection on him the last time, and he's learnt nothing."

"What else do you expect from a Malfoy?" drawled Tracey Davis.

"BE SILENT, HALFBLOOD," roared Malfoy, quickly grabbing his wand as he undid the bind on his legs. "MY NAME SPEAKS FOR ITSELF! I'LL NOT BE HUMILIATED BY THIS FILTHY β€”"

"..."

"..."

Draco tried to speak, but realised that his lips were sealed. He tried to force them open, even dropping his wand like an idiot. Harry sighed, and stabbed his wand at Draco again, enjoying the look of fear in the boy's eyes as he snapped his wand upwards in a particularly sharp thrust. Like a rocket, Draco was bodily pushed up to the ceiling, where eight different invisible punches hit him from all sides, with one of them aimed at his groyne. Every single person winced at the grunts the Malfoy scion was making, but none of them did anything in response.

"Well then," said Harry slowly. "I guess that signals the end of this duel?"

"..."

"Or perhaps not."

The rest of it was lost in screams as Harry yanked him downwards to the floor. Half the class screamed in shock as Draco fell to the floor, squealing, only to be stopped just a feet above the ground, held by invisible chains.

Draco kept flailing around.

"Still not enough?"

He sent a tickling hex at him. After all the hits the ferret had taken, thrashing around because of the tickling hex would hurt worse than taking a blasting curse head on.

"'Uh, Professor," said Pansy Parkinson, biting her fingers. "He's silenced! He cannot speak!"

"Ah!" said Harry, as if only realising that. "My apologies!"

And he flicked his wand, undoing the hex.

"I give! I give!" claimed the ferret. "I give up!"

"Ah," said Harry, cocking his head at him, satisfied. He glanced at Nott and Daphne. "Does this count as victory?"

Daphne giggled. "Yes. Yes it does, Professor."

"Thank you," said Harry with a polite nod. "As you can see, I'm diligently trying to learn the traditions and customs of my forefathers, but there's always some trivia that misses me."

"You'll survive," Daphne deadpanned.

"Ah well," said Harry, looking at Malfoy's fallen form. "That ends this demonstration then. Thank you, Mr. Malfoy, for being such a sport. Ten points to Slytherin."


AN: Update Schedule for next month - 5th. 10th. 15th. 20th. 25th. 30th.

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