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Chapter 6: Duel

Albus, and his many names and titles, Dumbledore exited from the fireplace. The colours in the room were a bit different, but the homey feeling was just as he remembered from almost a hundred years ago. The Flamels were waiting for him there without wearing their disguise as old people. Few were aware that they looked as young as they did 500 years ago.

Nicolas was at the table, his eyes glued to a book in his hands. The man was so absorbed in what he was reading, he hadn't even acknowledged Dumbledore's arrival. He was a bit hurt by that, but he knew his mentor's antics when he found something that caught his eye.

Perenelle was elegantly sitting in a chair and sipping a cup of tea. Seeing her there, Dumbledore understood she was the one he will be speaking with today. What for, he didn't know, but he will find out shortly.

"Perenelle," Dumbledore greeted her first before addressing his mentor, "Nicolas."

A grunt was the response he received in return. Whatever Nicolas was reading seemed to be incredibly intriguing to him.

"Welcome, Albus," Perenelle greeted him, "Don't mind Nick. He's been like this for some time now."

"If I may ask, what is the book about?" Dumbledore asked with interest. There was no title on the book, just a plain black cover.

"Blacksmithing," Perenelle said simply. Although a bit surprising, Dumbledore accepted it at face value. When you live as long as Nicolas, you pick up whatever hobbies interest you to pass the time.

"I really enjoy my visits here, but I don't believe you called me without reason," Dumbledore said as he sat on one of the free chairs.

"Ah, yes, I forget how busy you are nowadays with your many positions," Perenelle shook her head in disapproval.

Dumbledore made an expression he would never allow himself in public. He deflated in his chair and looked to have aged a dozen years in a second.

"It's not like I wanted them. I would love to be nothing more than a headmaster and spent all my time teaching at Hogwarts. However, they pushed me into becoming the Chief Warlock of the Wizengamot and Supreme Mugwump, and ever since, I've been overflown with work. I've drunk so many Invigoration Draughts as of late, I may have developed an immunity for the potion."

"And that's why we live our lives away from the Wizarding World," Perenelle said. If they had stayed active in the Wizarding World, they would've been in the same spot as Dumbledore.

"But we are not here to talk about that today. I've called you over so that I could enlist our son in Hogwarts."

Pause. Dumbledore blinked in pure shock as he heard her. He had known the Flamels for nearly a hundred years, and not once have they ever mentioned a son. Plus...

"Your son?" Dumbledore questioned in wonder, which was a mistake on his part.

"Dare mention that, and I promise you will leave here missing more than a few of your body parts," Perenelle threatened with a dangerous glint in her eyes.

Dumbledore wisely kept his mouth shut. Perenelle was a healer, but she was a prime example of why Mediwizards have to take a Healer's Oath. She could fix almost any injury or sickness just as effortlessly as she could cause them. Dumbledore didn't doubt her words. Not only was she very skilled, but he was also in her house, surrounded by her wards.

"I will be happy to enlist your son in Hogwarts. The Professors are the best of the best, and I'm sure he will become a great wizard with their help," Dumbledore chose his words carefully.

Perenelle stayed quiet for a moment before speaking up, "Atreus already is a great wizard. If he took his O.W.L's and N.E.W.T's right now, he would be able to pass the practical side of the exams with flying colours. He might struggle with the written portion, but that's because he has his own understanding of magic, and he doesn't care about when and why a spell was created or how it was used and improved over time."

"The main reason I want Atreus to go to Hogwarts is so that he can socialize with kids his age. Don't get me wrong, he will probably learn a thing or two there in the school's vast library, but again, that's not why I want him enlisted."

"I see," Dumbledore nodded, "and how old is he?"

"Fourteen, will become fifteen on the 4th of December."

"A fourth-year student then," Dumbledore mused, wondering if he had been privately tutored by the Flamels until now.

"Fourth-year, fifth-year, sixth-year, it doesn't matter. I told you that Atreus is already a great wizard. However, he's never had the chance to talk with kids his age," Perenelle said sharply.

"I understand, but I will need to..."

Perenelle cut him off by raising her hand.

"Atreus is outside practicing his magic. You can go and see for yourself," she said coldly.

Dumbledore nodded and stood up without another word, realizing it was better to keep his mouth shut. When he exited out of the door, Nicolas popped his head of the book, "That was mean," he said.

"It's his fault for not believing my words," Perenelle shrugged her shoulders. "Might as well give him a first-hand experience of Atreus' magic."

Nicolas chuckled and returned back to reading. The ideas and different ways of creating items by the dwarven brothers simply fascinated him. They were so unconventional and enthralling, and Nicolas was sure the goblins would kill to get their hands on the book he was reading.

Dumbledore exited the house, and it didn't take him long to find Atreus. He was a distance away, sitting on the ground crosslegged with his wand dancing in his hand. Patches of dirt were rising high in the air one by one like an upward fountain in front of him before reaching a large ball made of earth that was slowly rotating.

This simple display of pure magical skill was enough for Dumbledore to understand what Perenelle meant. Atreus was keeping the ball of earth in the air while rotating it at the same time. He also seemed to be controlling each patch of dirt separately while levitating them up in the air. Atreus made it looked easy, but Dumbledore knew that was far from the truth. He wasn't even sure if wizards that have graduated already could replicate this feat.

As Dumbledore was enjoying the display of magic, he noticed that no more patches of dirt were being levitated into the air. Suddenly, the ball of earth was flung in his direction at high speed. His wand appeared in his hand not a second later, and he simply pointed at the incoming projectile. The ball of earth transformed mid-air into a cocoon of butterflies, which spread their wings and flew away.

Atreus had stood up by this point and was studying him with an appraising look. Dumbledore didn't even get to say a word before the boy swiped his wand, creating ethereal wolves wherever it passed.

That was an unusual form of conjuration. Dumbledore understood what Perenelle meant when she said the boy had his own understanding of magic. The ethereal wolves looked so similar to an animal produced by the Patronus Charm, yet they didn't have a shining light to them.

Dumbledore decided to entertain Atreus for the moment and mimicked his gesture by swiping his wand in front of him. The ground shook, and earthen soldiers with swords and shields dug themselves out of the dirt. They intercepted the wolves and met them head-on.

Atreus didn't stay idle and swiped his wand once more, conjuring large ethereal snakes to join the fight. Dumbledore responded in kind by raising soldiers with pikes from the very ground beneath them.

The newly summoned creatures entered the fray, making the fight even more complicated, but the two of them weren't done. Atreus summoned eagles, which flew straight at Dumbledore, who in return raised archers from the ground that shot them down.

Now their little duel turned into a complicated game of magical chess. Dumbledore couldn't help but enjoy himself while also admiring the skill of the young man. He couldn't even consider him a boy after seeing the way he used magic. The ethereal creatures Atreus summoned were also very unique and pleasing to look at that.

'This is how magic should be! Enjoyable and beautiful to look at!'

Dumbledore was having a good time, for a moment forgetting all the concerns that plagued him for the past years. As much as he was enjoying it, he decided to test Atreus out and see how he will respond to being directly attacked. He pointed his wand at the young man and fired a simple spell.

Of course, it was nothing serious, just a simple Disarming Charm. As a professor, a teacher by heart, it wasn't in his nature to try and purposefully harm someone so young. That was also one of his downsides. Dumbledore didn't have the heart to harm one of his students until he turned into a monster, who even he couldn't stop, but that was not why he was here today.

The streak of red light flew at Atreus, and he watched in interest, waiting to see how the young man will react. Will he dodge out of the way? Will he fire a counterspell or raise a shield? Or will he... just swat it away with his free hand as if it was nothing more than an annoying insect.

Dumbledore stared in shock. He understood the principle behind what Atreus did, but even he wouldn't attempt that unless it was a last resort move. He didn't have the confidence of pulling it out with such ease, but the young man did it with practiced ease as if he had done it multiple times before.

As surprised as he was, Dumbledore managed to quickly fire a few more spells to block the incoming ones sent by Atreus. His reflexes might have dulled a bit over the ages, but his magic was as strong as ever.

Spell after spell, the two fired at each other while also maintaining their summoned creatures. The longer they dueled, the more impressed Dumbledore was with Atreus. As enjoyable as it was, he decided it was time to end it.

While sending spells to intercept the ones fired by Atreus, Dumbledore discreetly cast a Disarming Charm. The red streak of light swiftly moved like a snake, hiding behind the earthen soldiers and staying away from the young man's sight. It snuck up on Atreus and struck his right arm, flinging his wand from his grasp.

Thinking their duel was over, Dumbledore was about to pocket his wand before he noticed a red hue shimmer for a split second around Atreus. The young man raised his hand, aiming for him, and he felt it. Magic surged like a tidal wave that was about to crush him.

The wand in his hand swiftly danced in alarm, raising the earth in front of Dumbledore, creating wall after wall. He didn't stop there and formed a few magical shields. The amount of magic that he felt was simply alarming.

And then it happened. A blinding flash of light filled the area, followed by the crushing sound of lightning. Dumbledore's earthen walls got pierced as if they were made of paper, his magical shields crumbled to dust, and he hastily had to create a few more, barely stopping the attack.

'That could've been dangerous,' Dumbledore shook his head. What was wrong with the current generation? There were kids in Hogwarts that showed unnatural magical abilities that even he couldn't explain. Now there was this young man with one of a kind magical prowess. If wizards and witches called him the second coming of Merlin, then what...

Dumbledore's line of thought got interrupted there as he felt a sharp tip pressed against his neck. Alarmed, he peeked to the side, only to see Atreus staring at him with his icy-blue eyes while holding a small knife in his hands. When had the young man reached him, and how had he snuck up on him?

"You shouldn't let your guard down," Atreus said, still holding the knife to his neck.

"Wise words," Dumbledore replied, and wandlessly fired a Stunner at him. However, that didn't have the desired effect, and he suddenly found himself flipped over and roughly slammed into the ground. Atreus pinned him down, and the tip of the knife found itself next to his neck once more.

Dumbledore was in complete shock. He had hit Atreus with a point-blank Stunner, and he was sure he didn't hold back. The young man should've been knocked out, so how had he resisted it?

"Did you underestimate me, or are you purposefully holding back?" Atreus asked, still pinning him down.

"I would never harm a young man on purpose," Dumbledore replied truthfully.

"Ah, so you aren't like Yao. He doesn't mind roughing me up when I get too confident," Atreus said. He stood up and offered Dumbledore his hand. Albus took it, and Atreus lifted him up. His old bones throbbed, not appreciating being thrown like that.

"Yao?" Dumbledore asked.

"An old man that visits from time to time. Kicks my butt when he feels like it and shows me a trick or two. He likes to talk vaguely, trying to act smarter," Atreus replied with a laugh.

"That might be a problem that plagues all people as they grow older," Dumbledore said with a shake of his head.

"You become dumber when you grow older?" Atreus asked, his lips lifting up in amusement.

"Maybe," Dumbledore replied with a chuckle. Not many people would joke around him like that. It felt refreshing.

"So, who are you?" He asked before saying, "I'm Atreus, by the way."

"I'm Albus Dumbledore, and it's a pleasure to meet you, Atreus," Dumbledore introduced himself, "I can call you that, right?"

"Yes, after all, that's my name. What else are you going to call me? Anyway, you are the headmaster of Hogwarts, right?" Atreus asked.

"Yes, your parents said they would like to enlist you there," Dumbledore replied, noticing how a bright smile formed on Atreus' face and how his eyes glittered in happiness when he mentioned his parents.

"Mum and dad..." Atreus paused as if savoring those two words, "I heard them talk about you once or twice. Dad said you were an okay student, while mum thinks you like sugar way too much for your age."

Dumbledore laughed at that. He couldn't help himself, but a moment later, he winced.

"Are you okay? I didn't hurt you too badly, did I?" Atreus asked in concern.

"I'm fine, don't worry about it," Dumbledore replied and returned his wand back into his sleeve. He discreetly looked at his palm, seeing a few burn marks. That wasn't good...

"So, Atreus, what do you think about joining Hogwarts?" Dumbledore asked, trying to change the subject and distract himself.

"Mum... thinks I should go to school, so I can make friends my age. I wouldn't mind that. I like meeting new people. The school is also supposed to have a vast library, and I would love to check it out."

"I would've preferred going to Beauxbaton since I like France more. It's sunnier, and it doesn't rain as much, plus the people wear better clothing. But we found out that some kind of a tournament will be happening in Hogwarts this year, and the students from Beauxbaton will be coming to participate. I want to see it, so we figured I might as well go to Hogwarts."

"The Triwizard Tournament," Dumbledore said with a frown. He didn't like it one bit. Too many young wizards and witches have lost their lives participating in the deadly tournament.

"I would appreciate it if you don't tell people about the tournament. The information about it still hasn't been released to the public."

Yet the Flamels already knew about it. If Dumbledore had to guess, they've probably already met with Madame Maxime and found out that only seventh-year students will be coming over to Hogwarts. He was a bit sad that Hogwarts wasn't their first choice, but now knowing that Atreus wasn't really in need of tutoring, he could understand their decision.

At that moment, Dumbledore noticed something interesting. A small, black-scaled snake with feathered wings flew over to them. It flapped itself above Atreus and plopped on his head. The young man reached out and gently scratched the snake's scales, and it hissed in delight. What surprised Dumbledore was when Atreus hissed back.

"You can talk to snakes?" Dumbledore asked in wonder. He knew the stigma about Parselmouths, but he was aware that it was nothing more than a magical ability. Just because someone was able to talk to snakes didn't mean he was inherently evil.

"I can speak to all animals as long as they can talk back," Atreus replied, "Even to the annoying unicorns in the forest. Did you know what they said the first time they saw me? 'Hahaha, look, there's another dumb male on the island.' Stupid unicorns. You should've seen how one toppled over after realizing I can talk back to them. They haven't badmouthed me since then, and a female one even lets me ride her. She's kinder than the rest."

Dumbledore listened in interest. Atreus was full of surprises, and he quite liked the young man. He seemed like a good-natured and curious kid. The only thing he disliked was how Atreus had so willingly held his knife against his neck, but in the end, the young man hadn't really hurt him. Plus, a unicorn would never allow an evil person on top of it.

The two entered the house, and Perenelle was looking at Dumbledore with a satisfied and knowing smirk.

"Young Atreus is an incredibly talented wizard, and I believe that he will be accepted by teachers and students alike in Hogwarts. I will personally send you a letter with all the necessary school supplies," Dumbledore said, "It was a pleasure seeing you all, but I must be on my way."

"I told you so," Dumbledore heard Perenelle as he walked over to the fireplace. He couldn't let her get the last words like that, could he now?

"You did," Dumbledore admitted and said, "I sometimes forget that one should always listen to those older than himself."

Dumbledore then disappeared into the fireplace, escaping the wrath of Perenelle.


Atreus walked over to her and wrapped his arms around in a hug.

"Don't worry, mum. He doesn't know better."

Perenelle froze as her body shook. It was just one simple word, yet it meant so much to her. She wrapped her arms around him and squeezed him tight. A single tear dropped from her eye as she muttered, "Son."

Allgod Allgod

A timeskip into my first action scene, which I hope wasn't too bad. You guys will be the judge to that.

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