The entire process of creating Horcruxes is incredibly demanding.

As the number of soul splits increases, the requisite degree of malevolence and the difficulty of the procedure rise linearly.

For most dark wizards, the limit lies in splitting their souls once.

No wizard can fragment their essence into more than two parts and successfully create more than one Horcrux.

The agony involved is sufficient to drive the caster to the brink, and the act of soul-splitting renders the primary soul highly unstable.

Skyler holds the view that achieving what Voldemort did, splitting his soul multiple times to create numerous Horcruxes, is simply an impossibility.

After the soul is severed, the subsequent step involves selecting a suitable receptacle for the Horcrux and infusing the soul into it.

While any item can serve as a Horcrux, the transfer necessitates an exceptionally potent spell to shield the Horcrux and an ample supply of magical power to complete the entire process.

This underscores that, even if a dark wizard possesses the malevolence to split their soul, success in creating a Horcrux is contingent on robust support.

The text emphasizes the imperative for the dark wizard to adequately safeguard their Horcrux.

Damage to the Horcrux invariably affects the main soul, exacerbating its already precarious state.

The immediate consequence is a gradual descent into madness for the dark wizard.

However, their power remains unaffected; in fact, the soul’s increased malevolence enhances proficiency in wielding dark magic.

Skyler inwardly chuckles at this revelation, recognizing it as less-than-ideal news. Destroying three of Voldemort’s Horcruxes—Tom’s Diary, Ravenclaw’s Diadem, and Slytherin’s Locket—may seem to bring him a step closer to demise, but in reality, it doesn’t effectively diminish the potency of Voldemort’s corporeal form.

Instead, it makes him more formidable.

Beyond Horcruxes, “The Secret of Cutting-edge Black Magic” delves into various malevolent spells, such as the curse known as “The Kiss of the Dementor.”

This curse, rooted in the study of the Dementor’s Kiss, directly targets a person’s soul, extracting it from the body and rendering the individual irreversibly damaged.

In the future, the book promises detailed insights into topics like the creation and control of Inferi, the three Unforgivable Curses, and more.

However, Skyler, for the time being, isn’t intrigued by refining corpses and Unforgivable Curses.

This is due to the fact that, like all minor wizards, he has traces implanted on his body by the Ministry of Magic.

Contrary to the fan fiction from his previous life, Skyler doesn’t consider the magic wand as the solution to every problem.

If that were the case, why would “Mad-Eye” Moody, during the “Seven Potters” encounter, bother risking his life and losing an ear? Instead, Skyler is aware of a mysterious alchemical item in the Ministry of Magic’s Office for the Prohibition of the Misuse of Magic—an artifact dating back to Merlin’s time.

Originally designed to identify magically gifted children in Great Britain, it now serves a different purpose: monitoring the spellcasting of minor wizards.

The role of this alchemical item has since been taken over by Hogwarts’ “Quill of Acceptance” and “Book of Admittance,” but its initial purpose was to detect magical ability early on, preventing potential tragedies.

The Ministry of Magic justifies its surveillance, citing the need to monitor minor wizards to ensure they don’t cast spells in front of Muggles, thereby violating international secrecy laws.

However, the scope of detection extends to all magic within the vicinity of the young wizard.

In essence, casting spells like the Unforgivable Curses in the presence of Lucius could be considered cheating, leading the Ministry to suspect Lucius of breaking the law.

Despite certain places, such as Malfoy Manor, being fortified with extensive shielding magic, rendering them undetectable even to the silk’s power, Skyler dismisses these magical options as unnecessary in the short term due to his current time constraints.

One particular dark magic that captures Skyler’s interest in “The Secret of Cutting-edge Black Magic” is the Taboo.

In the original narrative, Voldemort cast a forbidden word spell on his name, using it to hunt down members of the Order of the Phoenix.

This magical taboo marks any spoken word, enabling immediate tracking of the speaker’s location—a highly useful tracking spell.

Although initially intended to instill panic and dread, it lacks the overt impact of curses like the Imperius, the Killing Curse, or the creation of Inferi, making it less conspicuous to the Office of Forbidden Magic.

Setting aside “The Secret of Cutting-edge Black Magic,” Skyler picks up another tome, “Forbidden Transfiguration.”

This book explores the taboo realm of Transfiguration, introducing numerous irreversible transformation magics.

For instance, Circe, an ancient Greek witch, was known for transforming lost sailors into pigs on the island of Eea.

The McLivo family on Delia Island utilized a spell to turn rival families into bloodthirsty, five-legged beasts known as Quintapeds.

Further perusal reveals the Transmogrifian Torture, a magic Skyler finds distressingly familiar from the research notes left by Lockhart.

It stands out as a particularly insidious spell, capable of inflicting pain and agony through the deformation of the human body.

Examples include needles piercing fingertips, penetrating eyeballs, and pricking the second child with a pin.

The true horror lies not just in the pain itself but in the anticipation before it occurs—like the moment a sharp needle aims at the pupil or the unsettling sensation of lightly rubbing the second child with a barbed clip.

Few possess the psychological fortitude to endure such pressure.

In contrast to the Heart Drilling Curse, this form of black magic derives its potency from Transfiguration rather than requiring malevolent thoughts, making it distinct from traditional spells.

The transfiguration torture spell demands two prerequisites: a high proficiency in transformation and precise control over the spirit—conditions ideally suited to Skyler’s capabilities.

Turning the pages, one discovers an array of malevolent polymorphisms, such as the “aging curse” that transforms individuals into elderly figures, the “four-legged beasting curse” compelling a beast-like posture, and the horrifying “corpse-turning curse.”

While effective at repulsing others, these transfigurations lack practicality, appealing mainly to a select group of cruel and aberrant wizards.

Skyler’s true fascination lies in “Stone Transfiguration,” a magic that petrifies individuals into stone statues.

Unlike the Basilisk’s petrification, which results in rigidity and paralysis without visible alteration, the stone transformation technique transforms subjects into lifelike stone statues.

Unless scrutinized by a discerning wizard, most individuals would perceive them as mere statues.

Remarkably, both the petrification effect of the Basilisk and the stone transformation technique can be countered by the mandrake grass resurrection potion.

Taboo Transfiguration has been obtained!

With the acquisition of “Taboo Transfiguration,” Skyler secures yet another compelling addition to his magical repertoire.

Delving further into the Black Magic Book of the Black Family, Skyler discovers a remarkable find—the elusive “Abatel Volume III.”

This fragment, integral to the Black family’s magical heritage, focuses on soul spells.

Recognizing the inherent overlap between soul magic and spiritual magic, Skyler sees the potential for synergistic gains that could enhance both aspects.

As his mental power has already reached its limits, he hopes to glean insights from “Abatel Volume III” to bolster the strength of his soul.

Having accumulated volumes on Spirit, Soul, and Curse, Skyler marvels at his extraordinary luck compared to the ill-fated Ravenclaw.

At just 14, with his birthday celebrated three weeks ago, he contemplates the prospect of fulfilling Ravenclaw’s last wish to collect all eight volumes of the entire book.

As June 30 arrives, marking the end of the school year, the young wizards board the Hogwarts Express.

In Skyler’s compartment, alongside the familiar trio, Astoria joins the journey, adding a new dynamic to their adventures.

“Senior Skyler, I clinched the top spot this semester! Any rewards for me? Hee hee!” Ever since the Dingle incident where Astoria kissed Skyler, she seemed to shed her reserved demeanor, displaying a mischievous expression as she playfully interacted with Skyler.

A subtle glimmer passed through Skyler’s eyes, but a gentle smile adorned his lips. “Certainly, Astoria, you deserve a reward. Rest assured, this summer vacation holds an unexpected surprise for you!”

Casually inquiring, as if nonchalant, he asked, “How did the others in your session fare?”

“Hmm…” Astoria tilted her head in contemplation before responding, “Students from other houses in our year were formidable too. Besides me, Slytherin had another standout. The grades were quite commendable. My sister Hestia Carlo secured fifth place, and Flora Carlo, my other sister, claimed the sixth spot.”

The Carlo family? Skyler’s eyes flickered with indecipherable thoughts.

Then, a furrow formed on Skyler’s brow. “Slytherin’s performance is no more than that? It’s unexpected!”

Since establishing his influence in Slytherin, there had been a noticeable shift in the snakes’ ethos—unity, mutual assistance, an appreciation for knowledge, and respect for teachers.

By benefiting from Skyler’s academic guidance, Astoria was encouraged to share study notes with classmates, fostering camaraderie and enhancing Slytherin’s overall strength.

“Who secured second to fourth place?” he inquired.

“Second place goes to Melinda Bobin from Ravenclaw. She’s remarkably skilled in potions and herbology, surpassing even some second-year students. Third is Demirza Robbins from Gryffindor; her proficiency in spells, transformations, and flying earned accolades from Professor McGonagall for her vivid imagination. In fourth place, there’s Hufflepuff’s Joanna Derwent, typically unremarkable, but she unexpectedly excelled in the exams and shone brightly.”

Skyler noted an intriguing pattern— the top six positions were all occupied by young girls. Where were the young wizards?

“This summer, there’s the Quidditch World Cup!” Daphne exclaimed. “You promised my dad to visit our house, right? Why don’t we attend the World Cup together? My dad can definitely arrange tickets.”

“Yes, Senior Skyler, let’s go together!” Astoria chimed in, her tone playful.

Turning to Meredith, Skyler found her shrugging. “Since Mom and Dad passed away, it’s just me and the House-elves at home. I’ve agreed to Uncle Gareth, making the Shafiq family a vassal family of Greengrass, hoping to revive the family’s glory. I’ll spend the summer at Greengrass Manor. We can head to the World Cup together if you can make it.”

Skyler planned to utilize the time before summer vacation for personal endeavors.

After a quick calculation, he agreed, “Alright, let’s go with that plan! We’ll meet again a few days before the World Cup begins and head to the game together!”

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Published On: January 4, 2024

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