Severus looked at the people present around him. Nearly all the students of the four houses present here were anxious for the event and the class today. He couldn't blame them after all children at this age had fragile egos and too much pride and overconfidence in themselves.
"Each year form a line depending on the houses. Girls will make their own lines differently. There should be total 24 lines within 5 minutes. Hurry up everyone!" Professor Hart spoke up as he looked at them.
The Professors and the teacher present there started to help in the formation of lines. Professor Mcgonagall oversaw the Gryffindors huddled together in the corner while Professor Flitwick oversaw the Ravenclaws. The Hufflepuffs were dealt by Headmaster himself while the Slytherins were being arranged by Professor Hart himself.
"Girls form your separate lines based on years, Boys form your own separate lines based on the years," Professor Hart spoke loudly to the Slytherins present there.
Severus walked over to the group of people present there as he settled among the students of his own class.
The girls were forming lines of their own and were already halfway completed. The sixth year boys were huddled between the lines of the 5th and 7th, the two lines on either side of them. It was a useless task as the students will start to mingle with the students of other years as soon as the Professor left the area.
Five minutes later there were twenty four lines of students who were standing in the Great Hall. With a wave of Dumbledore's wand the floor was completely clean and spotless. With another wave there were chairs arranged for the four teachers present there.
"Duelling is a noble art which has been practised in the Wizarding World for long. It has been a way to make friends, settle disputes honourable and many other things such as competition nowadays," Professor Hart said standing on the now clean podium in the centre as Professor Mcgonagall and Headmaster took the seat.
"All of the students here know the basic spells required for duelling such as the shield charm and some offensive spells?" Professor Hart asked looking at everyone.
There were loud chorus of 'yes' and affirmative nods present for his question. Since it was the time of warfare; the spells and the teachers of Defence against the Dark Arts were not some imbeciles hired by Dumbledore. Nearly all of them had been competent as Professors and build the basics very well till now. Moreover the environment outside also made the students more determined for learning the subject.
Severus looked at the Professor among the excited whispers of his housemates. He could already see, this would be a huge fun for his housemates who were already itching to fight some more students of Gryffindor and publicly shame them. He hoped for a great duel for him, he will not showcase his skills completely but he needed a little adrenaline boost right now with the last few days of only stuffing and partying with half dead asses of the Wizarding World.
Besides it was a nice oppurtunity to test some of his new spells which he had created for use.
"Now all of you write your names in a small piece of paper individually and submit them to the Prefects present in your line. The mock duels would be done on the random name selection by our special guest, Mr Sorting Hat," Professor Hart announced as he looked at the students present there. Everyone looked at the chair where the sorting hat was present besides Professor Mcgonagall.
As Professor Hart's words ended, there was a sudden rush in the Great Hall among all the students present there. Everyone started to hurriedly bring out small parchments from their bags and write their names on it, to give it to the Prefects present in their lines.
Severus took the parchment or the piece of paper provided by John who had equally tore of a single large paper into 5 pieces for all the members present in their dorm.
Severus could have done simply with it by a simple wandless wave of his hand but he was not going to show off his skills in an area where the most possible recruits for the Dark Lord lied around.
He, unlike his housemates who were trying to write their names by looking around for a small pad or taking out books to write their names by holding the parchment above the book lest it tear off, simply took his wand out and waved it once over the paper letting his name written on the paper in an elegant and neat script.
The students who had yet to write their names on the parchment looked at his work and immediately started to take out their wands to do the same. The ones who were waiting for others to finish first so that they could use their books for support, not in order to bring out their own also started to copy the action. Severus was amused inwardly at the whole thing however, it seemed to him that everyone was copying is action.
John Wilkes started to collect the parchments of the nine boys in total, present in Slytherin 6th year. Four of the boys were half bloods and part of the circle in which Laena Greengrass travelled. none of them had crossed the age of 20 before they were killed during the course of War.
All the Prefects started to bring their collected parchments one by one to the Professor who started to put it inside the sorting hat by inverting it. Unsurprisingly to him when the hat was straightened once again none of the parchments dropped as if they were swallowed by the hat. Severus wasn't surprised in the least, the hat had stored the Sword of Gryffindor for centuries; some parchments were just a piece of cake for it.
"Now everyone, the hat will call out two names. Those whose names are taken must come to the front while the others back off to avoid spells being hit. Remember no dark or deadly spells will be used here; otherwise you all will be dealing with the Headmaster and the Deputy Headmistress along with me and Professor Flitwick. Professor Dumbledore will be shielding the area so that none of the stray spells land on the other spectators," Professor Hart announced.
Everyone nodded and Professor Hart looked at the Sorting Hat whose mouth opened to announce the first two names.
"Dennis Wilson and Harvey Gass," announced the sorting hat.
The first match was scheduled between a 7th year Ravenclaw and 7th year Hufflepuff. As far as Severus's knowledge none of them were an exceptional students whose names were known through Hogwarts much.. The Hufflepuff boy was a beater while the Ravenclaw boy was students whose skill laid in charms.
Both of them excitedly went to the stage and took positions infront of each other. Professor Dumbledore waved his wand over the area in a circle and Severus saw a slight blue hued transparent shield appear around the area covering the whole area near the two of them and Professor Hart and Professor Flitwick who were inside the shield.
"Now, on my count. Be ready- 1, 2, 3" Professor Hart spoke up with a stance taking his wand out himself too. Just like that spells started between the two of them with red and red light going towards each other with a shout of "Expelliarmus."
Severus managed to calm his eager body which was already itching to go for action.
Hermione Granger looked at the figure of Marlene and Jessica Walters who were duelling now on the center of the Great Hall infront of the members.
The pairing of the students who had to duel were just as random as their Defence Professor had said. Marlene was a sixth year student while Jessica was a 7th year student of Hufflepuff.
She had recognised some of the names who had fought already.
Mary had already fought till now with a Ravenclaw. Marlene had recently joined the fray with fighting the Hufflepuff senior.
While Marlene was skilled, Hermione knew that Jessica was prolonging the match by only shielding herself and letting Marlene tire herself. Till now the fifth year matches had been cleared with the Gryffindor and Slytherins letting the tensions build between their houses. In half matches between Gryffindors and Slytherins, the former half was won by her house while the latter made the comeback in the second half of the matches. Till now only one and half hour had been spent in matches and there was still two hours remaining. Most of the matches were quick with four names being drawn who each were told to be ready for action one after another letting the time for names be reduced.
It seemed Fatigue was catching up to Marlene which was read by her opponent too who just took a second to aim and disarm her with a well placed non verbal expelliarmus charm. There were some students in Hufflepuff and Ravenclaw who were good duellists in her opinion. She didn't recognised their names much however, bar some of the good ones. It was clear that they had been practising for everything outside Hogwarts, the reality of the outside world not lost to them.
"You did well," she complimented Marlene who arrived recently to the place where the Gryffindors were huddled together among polite applause for her.
"Still didn't enough to win," Marlene said with a tired sigh as she took a deep breath with a small tired smile on her face.
"Yaa, but you did well Marlene. You gave our senior puff quite a hard time," Mary said with a small smile which Marlene returned.
"Next match Lily Evans vs Laena Greengrass after which Hermione Granger vs Narcissa Black," the sorting hat announced loudly to the hall full of students.
"Good luck Lily, teach the snakes a lesson," Marlene said energetically to the redhead who looked a little nervous.
"Good luck Lily," both Hermione and Mary wished her simultaneously along the other girls who too wished her luck.
"Thank you," Lily replied them all as she made her way to the centre of the Great Hall among the loud applause for her among the Gryffindors. The Marauders particularly expressing their joy with the help of loud applause and slight whistling earning a glare from Professor Mcgonagall.
In the Slytherin gathering area, everyone applaused for Laena Greengrass who too walked to the centre of the Hall amidst the whole cheering on her part by her group and the rest of the Slytherins.
Severus however was amused at the name of the two participants. He already knew who was going to win between this two.
While Harry Potter may have survived with the help of sheer dumb luck and resourcefulness in his part most of the times, this was not going to be the case here. The mark on his head had dissappeared which meant that there could be two things: either he was hiding it with the help of a glamour or it was removed by the subordinate of Lord Chaos who had made him aware about this thing.
Both the girls bowed to each other and readied their wands for action, waiting for the announcement of starting.
At the shout of begin from Professor Hart both of them immediately shoot out their spells simultaneously.
"Expelliarmus," Lily spoke swiftly with a voice ready for action.
'Flipendo,' Laena meanwhile casted non verbally. She had practised non verbal magic this summer and while it was still hard, she could do some of the spells already.
Red and blue light passed each other in the air as the two duellists started their duel.
"Protego," Lily casted immediately to protect herself from the incoming Knockback jinx. Laena meanwhile used her reflexes to come out of the way of the disarming charm as she immediately started to onslaught spells on the shield. Spells which covered wide area and will damage her shield fastly.
'Flipendo,' she casted again along with several other spells.
The last spell really put a strain in Lily's shield as the next 'reducto' from Laena's wand completely broke it.
While Lily Evans was a good witch who was great in charms she was not the caliber of Laena Greengrass.
Laena had been trained since childhood to be the Heiress of the Greengrass family and given the best education the likes of which the son and daughters of noble families received. She had spent hours in the duelling room under the eyes of her father and tutors who all had trained her to be the Heiress they wanted her to be. The time she had spent in various subjects studying and improving herself to her best as she tried to maintain the pressure and expectations which was on her as being a female in the patriarchially dominated Wizarding World.
It would be right to say that she was doing her best as she could to uphold herself and her family's position.
Lily was not the same case, she was a witch with a happy family and not much expectations from her parents. Her life and Laena's were not the same and while she was a gifted and talented witch in her own right, it was right to say that Laena was the better one for now. Lily didn't knew and understood the options or things one must do well in order to survive long in the duelling circuit, it would be right to say that her weakness in never understanding fighting and duelling properly was going to be her mistake.
Lily's biggest weakness had been going to defensive which gave Laena the chance to simply dominate her fully afterwards.
Lily was halfway on uttering her next shielding spell when her shield broke and she was caught by the 'depulso' by Laena. An impressive technique of using wide area spell to catch her ofguard which sent her flying to the other end.
As Lily fell to ground with a thud on her back, her fall not hurting much due to the cushioning charms on the floor done by Professor Flitwick from the start of today. Laena simply casted a disarming charm at that precise moment to disarm her of her wand. The wand came flying through air as Laena caught it amongst the huge cheers and applause from Slytherins present there.
Severus however was amused at the whole duel, it seemed he was right in his guesses once again.
Word Count - near 2.5K words
I was hoping to know with whom you want Severus to duel in the next chapter. I have no hate to Lily but you have to consider different aspects which I did like their background and all.
Comment on the names or in the chapter comment. You can spam but the ones with maximum comment would be considered.
Anyways the options are:-
Send some powerstones, I hope to see the fic crossing 1K Powerstones this week.