Chapter 64: Combat and Stealth
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Seeing Malcolm coming, Axel couldn't help but sigh. What the fuck does this bastard want now?

This is the first time he is approaching Axel so openly. Until now, Axel is rarely seen at the common house and at any other place. Only the Great Hall is the place which he frequents everyday. And this guy would never usually do anything to antagonise him in public since he had Martina's protection.

'So, what does he want?' Wondered Axel.

"Hunt, you should stop," said Damien solemnly. He had an air of righteousness around him.

Axel looked at him as if looking at a clown. "Who are you?"

"..." That broke his momentum. It's just like the arrogant fool to assume that everyone should know him. "I'm Damien 'Malcolm'. I'm here to stop you from continuing your disgraceful conduct."

Axel tilted his head. He was curious what this guy was upto. 'Alright, I'll bite.'

"What are you talking about?" He asked.

Damien smirked, "Oh, don't pretend to be innocent now. First, you seduced Martina to get her protection. Then you set your sights on the second most powerful girl, Patricia, and you get into the Slytherin Quidditch team without trial. It was bad enough that all the old members of the team had graduated, but you are making it worse by playing a role as important as a seeker with no skills and experience. You are a disgrace to House Slytherin."

Looking at the guy, Axel inwardly shook his head.

'This guy is digging his own grave,' he thought. In his previous observations, he has already found that unlike his older brother, Damien Malcolm is quite impulsive, despite his moderately clever mind. He doesn't think his actions through before acting. Right now, he must have seen that both Martina and Patricia weren't here and thought it was a perfect chance to make the whole house against Axel. And, his plan was going quite well so far, since his words had the desired effect. Negative glances were being thrown at Axel right now.

It was the truth that Axel's admission into the Slytherin Quidditch was quite abrupt. And unlike the case with Rose Potter, his admission wasn't taken too positively by the house. Damien was taking advantage of that to make things difficult for Axel since he can't openly bully him due to Martina's warning.

But, he was too impulsive. When it comes to a fight, whether it's a physical fight or a fight of words, Axel's response is equally sharp. On streets, you can solve most things with violence, but not everything. Thus, Axel usually tries to solve everything with violence, but when violence is not an option, he is capable enough in the battle of wits.

Looking at the guy, Axel nodded in understanding, "Alright, let's not mention that you don't know whether I'm a qualified seeker or not, but you are claiming that I seduced the Princesses of two noble and powerful families… without any proof or confirmation from any of the parties involved…" said Axel, and Damien's face paled as he realized, he fucked up. He wouldn't have thought that Axel would use his brain enough to respond logically instead of getting flustered and losing his cool.

Axel folded his hands on the table as he looked up at Damien, who was already regretting his word choice. "So, tell me, Damien, are you ready to bear the consequences of tarnishing the reputation of these two influential families? Blimey, I shudder to think what they would do to you, especially the Valentino Family."

'This is it. Yep, this is it,' thought Axel as he inwardly grinned in satisfaction. Now he can take his revenge from the shadows and everyone would think it's one of the two families.

Axel looked behind Damien as he raised his hand, "Oh, hey Martina! Look at this guy—"

Before he could finish, Damien already beat a hasty retreat, his crownies following right behind him.

May be his luck was too bad, but the real Martina actually came through the double doors at this moment and poor Damien fell back on his butt with just a look, causing the students who were following the whole conversation to burst into laughter.

Meanwhile, Martina who had done nothing: Am I that scary now?

Shaking his head, Axel went back to eating his breakfast. He had won the confrontation, but Malcolm's words made him aware that his admission into the team wasn't taken very well by some people. 'Guess I'll have to start soon,' he thought.

"That was… great," said Daphne, looking at Axel with shining eyes as they went to attend their classes.

Axel was bewildered, "Why are you so excited?" It's not the first time he has had a fight in front of her. Usually she's not so thrilled.

Daphne shook her head, "It's just a Ravenclaw thing. I didn't know you could be that witty. I was already ready to move away in case you threw the guy across the table."

Axel scoffed, "What do you take me for? A savage?"

Daphne smiled but didn't respond. At this moment, Daphne's friends from Ravenclaw joined them for some reason, making her glare at them.

"What are you guys talking about?" Asked Padma Patil.

Daphne gave the girls a warning look, "Something you guys have no business butting in."

"Come on, Daph. We are just trying to catch up. You never hang out with us anymore," said Sue Li.

Daphne gritted her teeth, "I believe we hung out just yesterday, or am I having memory problems now?" She already knew why they were disturbing her and she did NOT like it.

Axel's stats have been increasing too much. He already had the looks. But then he worked hard and slowly improved his academic abilities until he climbed to the first position last year. His looks have improved and he's tall and muscular instead of his earlier short and skinny body. Now he's also a seeker in Quidditch. So, of course the bitches are now flocking around, smelling meat, and Daphne absolutely hates it! Especially because they didn't see the good in him when he was still injured and malnourished. Compared to these girls', even Martina is much better.

Despite Daphne's unwelcoming attitude, the girls shamelessly tagged along while giggling. "We have Stealth Subterfuge and Combat Training today. I wonder what will happen..." said Mandy Brocklehurst.

Axel frowned. He doesn't like to be surrounded in a group, especially since he doesn't know everyone in the group. The girls would ask him questions from time to time but Axel would either ignore them or respond perfunctorily. Since they were Daphne's friends, he just let her handle them.

When they reached the class, everyone was surprised. Since the size of Hogwarts' classrooms can be adjusted, the space of the class had been extended by a lot for some reason. There were different targets and training dummies stationed at different distances. The tables and benches had been shifted to the side and weapons of all kinds were laid across them, creating quite the intimidating scene.

Looking at those sharp and Pointy weapons, Axel's first thought was, what would happen if he were to use 'Oppugno Totalis' here. The spell that lets him control multiple objects at the same time. With so many sharp and dangerous weapons, the classroom would turn into a meat grinder, wouldn't it?

'Damn my intrusive thoughts!' He thought, mentally giving himself a slap.

Clearing his head of the messy thoughts, he looked at the man waiting for them where the front who must be their professor. He was a man who looked to be in his 50s. He had greying hair but a fit and muscular body and the side of his chin had a cross-shaped scar. He had a few students of Mahoutokoro standing on his side as well.

"Welcome, everyone. I'm Sensei Morge and I'll be incharge of your combat training," he said in a deep and solemn voice.

"Combat is an essential part of being a Ninja. Most of our missions put us in a situation where we have to fight, whether it is to attack our enemies or to defend our clients. In this class, I'll be teaching you how you can use your body and weapons for doing that," he said, pointing at one particularly long table.

"We'll start with Kunai. They are on that table. Kunai are multifunctional weapons. They can be used as throwing weapons for long range attacks, they can be used in short range for hand to hand combat, they're also useful if you need to cut any objects like ropes or gouge holes, there's a hole in it's back where you can tie a rope, further branching out its uses. That's why, a kunai is a basic weapon that every ninja carries and learns to wield.

"Pick out your kunais from the table. We'll start with long range training."

"Blimey, a simple object has so many uses," commented Mandy Brocklehurst, examining the kunai in her hand.

"What are we supposed to do with this?" Asked Padma, picking up her own.

Axel picked one up as well as he weighed it in hands and examined it. As expected, the edges were blunted with magic so that the students don't hurt each other or themselves.

Sensei Morge pointed at the target circles stationed in front of them. "You're supposed to hit them. Improve your aim first."

"Really?"

"Just like that?"

"It's on!"

Students found the prospect of throwing Kunais enjoyable so everyone got right to it. But, they quickly realized it wasn't going to be as easy as they thought. Out of all the Kunais thrown in the beginning, very few were able to actually reach the target, let alone hit it.

"Lame! Let them show you how it's done," said Sensei Morge, gesturing to the students of Mahoutokoro.

The ninjas first demonstrated the technique and then made the throws. All of them were able to hit the bullseye. After that, they began to supervise the students so they don't accidentally hurt each other.

While the others were busy throwing with all their might, Axel just stood and watch. He had to agree with Sensei Morge, everyone was lame. Even the students of Mahoutokoro. He could hit the bullseye at this range even in crippled state. This throwing training was useless to him.

None of the girls around Axel were able to reach the target, let alone the bullseye. But they were quite eager to see Axel try.

"I can't reach it! But, I think Axel can make it," said Mandy Brocklehurst, feeling up the muscles on Axel's arm which were hidden under the cloak.

"Woah….what have you been hiding here!"

"... You shouldn't do that when I have a weapon in my hand," said Axel as she shook off her hand, barely resisting the urge to bash her face in.

Even though the threat was real, only Daphne out of the girls realized that he wasn't kidding. Following Mandy, the other girls also touched Axel's arms.

"Wow! This is so hard!"

"It's like rock!"

But not even a second later, they were all shoved away, not by Axel but by Daphne, even before Axel extracted himself.

"You all…Stay away from him!" She said in a scathing tone, trying to keep her voice quiet, but a student from Mahoutokoro still warned them to not cause a commotion.

The girls were a bit scared for a moment since they could feel the danger coming from Daphne this time. But then they thought it must be their imagination as they began whispering among themselves about Axel's looks. Only Axel, who knew her better could tell that something was wrong with her.

"even though I always wanted to do that… these bitches… there are so many sharp weapons here…" she kept murmuring some strange things in a low voice and her eyes couldn't be seen due to her hair.

"Hey," said Axel, shaking her little. "Are you alright?"

With a jerk, Daphne seemed to come to her senses as she looked at Axel. "Yeah… I'm fine. It's just that these girls are too infuriating," she said, not trying to prevent her voice to be heard by her friends. Though even now, the girls didn't take her seriously.

"Alright, we won't bother you if you can hit the target next time," said Mandy Brocklehurst.

"Yeah, we can do that!" The other girls agreed as well. But of course, they knew that there was no chance her kunai would even reach the target, let alone hit it.

Daphne coldly glared at the girls. "Fine." She said, picking up a kunai with a grim determination rarely seen in her.

Axel looked at her in surprise. Her previous attempts weren't bad but there was no power in her throws. He was sure she wouldn't be able to reach it.

But Daphne seemed determined, and pissed as she clutched the kunai tightly. After aiming for a while, she swung her hand with all her might.

Shin*

The kunai actually made a sound as it cut through the air, surprising Axel. This was a very strong throw. Strong enough that it would easily reach the target, proving everyone wrong. Though, Axel could also tell that her aim this time was off the mark. It wouldn't hit the target. The kunai in Axel's hand disappeared.

Shin*

DING*

The spinning kunai travelled in a curved path as it hit Daphne's kunai.

Thump Thump*

'They were too annoying after all,' thought Axel, looking at the two kunai buried in the bullseye as he ignored the shocked reactions of everyone else. He was fine with just Daphne's company for the time being.

For the Stealth Class, their teacher was a woman with braided black hair, wearing black lipstick and black outfit. Even her nails were painted black.

"I'm Kurai. Welcome to your Stealth and Concealment Training."

Even her name, "Kurai" translates into "Dark".

"You all might have heard that Ninjas are also called Shinobis and the underlying connotation of the word "Shinobi" is "to hide" and—by extension—"to forbear", hence its association with stealth and invisibility," she explained smoothly.

"So, Stealth and Subterfuge are an absolute must for any Shinobi. It's the main reason why Ninjas are hired. It's useful for Spying and Reconnaissance, assassination, concealment, Disguise, and so on."

'Damn, this woman doesn't censor her words.' thought Axel, looking at some of the students who seemed a bit terrified due to the mention of things like assassination. It has to be mentioned that Ninjas don't accept just any assassination request and not every ninja is given the authority to accept assassination missions. Officially, only the Hunter-nin corps are given such missions and few people have the authority to move them.

Unbothered, Kurai Sensei continued, "Let's start with stealth. Stealth doesn't simply mean invisibility. It involves everything you can do to make sure that no one notices what you're doing," saying so, Kurai sensei snapped her fingers.

In the next second, a kunai was buried above the head of a Student, Neville Longbottom, who promptly dropped to his knees with a terrified expression. "Did anyone see me throw that? This is stealth."

'She's good,' thought Axel. Too bad there was little she could teach him that he didn't already know. And the things he might not know are so advance that they won't be taught in the first class.

For the rest of the class, Axel simply kept a low profile. Since he was the best at Stealth, it was that much more important to keep it hidden from the students. It's a skill that loses its usefulness the more you advertise it.

The class passed peacefully. But, at the end of the class, "Hey, you!"

Kurai Sensei called out, making Axel stop. He looked back to see who was being called, only to see Kurai Sensei's gaze fixed on him.

'The fuck?'

"Yes you, the cute one. You wait for a while. We need to have a talk."

'Damn it, this time I didn't do anything!' Axel swore inwardly. What the heck? He had gone out of his way not to attract attention in this class, and this Sensei is just destroying all of his efforts.

Next: New Skills, Mysterious Martina

Next Next: The Chamber of Secrets

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