Although the intriguing incident during breakfast caught the attention of many, the young wizards were not particularly enthusiastic about discussing it.

The primary topic of conversation among Hufflepuff and Ravenclaw students still revolved around the Triwizard Tournament. The four contestants had employed highly creative methods to enter the water during the second event, fueling anticipation for the surprises they might unveil in the third.

At the extended Slytherin table, Draco observed Harry’s departure with covered hands, smirking disdainfully. A realization struck him – he had been quite juvenile before, harboring a deep-seated resentment towards Harry and envisioning him as a primary nemesis.

Reflecting on his own immaturity, Draco acknowledged that he had foolishly treated someone like Harry with animosity.

His childishness stemmed from a failure to actively seek friendships on the train, leading to an unjustified vengeful attitude towards Harry. In doing so, he overlooked the fact that his younger brother had quietly grown into a remarkable individual.

Surprisingly, the individuals most familiar with Skyler’s capabilities were Draco and Eleanor. While others might still be enchanted by Skyler’s prowess showcased in the Triwizard Tournament, Draco understood the level of strength reached by the ancestor within him.

Similarly, Eleanor, having personally confronted Barbarossa, comprehended the formidable strength possessed by the ancient mage.

Although concealed from others, Draco and Eleanor were acutely aware – Skyler had triumphed over the quasi-mage!

This realization had been lingering in their minds over the past few days.

Draco clenched his fists beneath the table, recognizing that it was time for him to mature. While catching up to Sherrin might be an ambitious goal, he refused to be entangled in trivial conflicts with Potter. A genuine desire to become stronger took root within him for the first time, awaiting its future blossoming.

The afternoon class was Care of Magical Creatures.

As the Slytherin students made their way to Hagrid’s hut for Care of Magical Creatures, they noticed Harry was missing from Gryffindor, likely due to the severity of the injury on his hand.

Hagrid resumed his teaching duties the previous week, taking over from Professor Grubbly-Plank. Instead of continuing with the Explosive-Tailed Skrewts, Hagrid decided to carry on Professor Grubbly-Plank’s lesson on unicorns.

Surprisingly, Hagrid demonstrated an extensive knowledge of unicorns, impressing even those who had been critical of him in the past, like Draco and Pansy.

In the latest class, Hagrid informed them that they had concluded the lessons on unicorns. Now, standing outside his hut, he awaited the students with several open cardboard boxes at his feet – a sight that intrigued them.

Draco frowned, disapprovingly pointing at the cardboard boxes, and remarked, “Tsk, tsk, what do we have here? Could it possibly be a newly hatched nest of fire-breathing lobster monsters?”

Skyler responded with a faint smile, saying, “Brother, let’s not jump to conclusions too quickly. Don’t we all learn from our mistakes? While Professor Hagrid might not give off an impression of high intelligence, in comparison to Professor Grubbly-Plank’s performance, he is not so foolish as to be unaware of losing support in front of the students.”

He continued, “Moreover, as Dumbledore’s trusted right-hand man, I’m certain Dumbledore must have had a thorough discussion with him. After that—” Skyler smirked, “Hagrid likely knows what was wrong with his previous teaching methods and the content he chose.”

Draco snorted in agreement, “That’s for the best. Can’t imagine having someone with low capabilities have the opportunity to teach us about anything.”

“Don’t worry; if Professor Hagrid still refuses to change, I will utilize the power of the Faculty Appointment Committee to replace him!” Skyler’s eyes gleamed with a cold light, and the corners of his mouth lifted slightly.

With his increasing strength, he had grown less fearful of Dumbledore and no longer needed to approach matters with the same timidity and hesitation as before.

Voldemort and Dumbledore, in all honesty, wield terrifying strength.

What significance does Dumbledore’s Order of the Phoenix hold? A collection of down-and-out werewolves, retired Aurors nursing injuries, inexperienced and bumbling new Aurors, and underhanded abductors.

Aside from Professor McGonagall and his close confidant Elphias Doge, there are scarce individuals worthy of the spotlight.

Turning attention to the Death Eaters, it’s no exaggeration to say they’re merely a group of extras with an “I’m just here to do a job” mentality. Antonin Dolokhov and Bellatrix, perhaps, stand out as the truly loyal and stage-worthy members.

Skyler grasped the situation with clarity. Demonstrating sufficient strength to contend with Dumbledore and thought Dumbledore was the key for him to live and fight against the new upcoming volatile dark forces in the wizarding world.

It didn’t matter if he was slightly inferior, as long as he could hold his ground for a few minutes. In the realm of Skyler’s camp, there were formidable soldiers and ample resources.

There are numerous formidable generals at play, including Aurors, Strikers, and Reconnaissance Teams indirectly influenced by him. Add to that the Vampire Royal Family, the Six Dominatrix Clans, the Silver Spear Duelists, Snape, and Karkaroff’s might—sufficient to overpower the other factions.

Not to mention his intelligence advantages, courtesy of the Auror intelligence department, trace detection, divination mastery, and more.

In a true war, timing is never the sole factor. The outcome of a single battle holds little significance in the grand scheme of things. The real deciders are the adequacy of resources and the foresight of intelligence.

Voldemort didn’t take the lead in this discussion; Dumbledore did.

In the original book, following Dumbledore’s demise, the Order of the Phoenix, lacking leadership, faced a dire situation. The “Battle of the Seven Potters” exemplified the challenges of moving Harry from Little Whinging in Surrey to the Burrow in Devon.

This task required elaborate measures, involving the use of six individuals as bait to divert attention. Ultimately, the operation encountered difficulties due to a deficiency in intelligence capabilities.

He faced an ambush by over 30 Death Eaters, thereby saving Moody’s life. Additionally, considering that one member of the Order of the Phoenix was on the brink of death, with almost no suitable replacement, the situation was dire.

If Skyler were leading the Order of the Phoenix, they could have secured a recycled door key from the Ministry of Magic or even utilized a vanishing cabinet for a completely secure transfer. This reflects a resource advantage, exposing a logistical weakness in the Order of the Phoenix.

Skyler’s reluctance to part ways with Dumbledore stemmed from a debt of gratitude. He had accepted a fragment of Abatel’s scroll from Dumbledore and received guidance on the secrets of the Unbreakable Vow and Bloodline fusion.

Repaying kindness with animosity didn’t align with Skyler’s principles.

Regardless, he decided to find an opportunity to reciprocate the favor first.

As everyone approached the box for a closer look, they discovered numerous furry black creatures inside.

A long nose and mouth protruded forward from the black face, resembling a duck’s bill, but with nostrils at the end. Its front paws were flat, akin to shovels, adding an unusual touch. As the creatures looked up, blinking at the class, they seemed perplexed by the sudden attention.

“These are Nifflers,” Hagrid explained as other classmates gathered around. “You usually find them in mines. They have a fondness for shiny things… Watch this.”

A Niffler leaped up, aiming to bite the watch off Pansy Parkinson’s wrist. Pansy shrieked and hastily retreated.

“Very useful little treasure detectors,” Hagrid remarked gleefully. “We can have some fun with them today. See there?” He pointed to a recently cleared piece of land. “I’ve buried a few gold coins. Whoever’s Niffler digs up the most gold coins will receive a prize. So, take off all the valuables on your body, pick a Niffler, get ready, and release them to work their magic.”

The young wizards took turns stepping forward to choose their Nifflers. Despite their similar appearances, most wizards selected them at random.

For some reason, ever since Skyler had mastered the snake-like Animagus, he discovered an indescribable temperament within himself. H

e found that, if he wished, he could discern the gender of magical animals through the breath they emitted, along with their emotions and aggression. It was as if he had gained some sort of beast-like intuition that only magical creatures possessed.

Skyler blinked, and in an instant, his pupils transformed into snake eyes before returning to their normal state. Unnoticed by the other wizards present, Skyler extended his hand, selected a Niffler, handed it to Daphne, and casually chose another one.

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Published On: April 4, 2024

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