Harry was started by the change in position, before he was starting to feel cold, but now he was feeling a little hot. He looked around, now in a court yard of some description. Each of the pillars looked to be carved into the shape of a knight, rather than human they were demonic. Horns and spikes adorned the armour, weapons looked downright evil, but he felt that they were used against evil, rather than for.
Harry's instinct told him there was a test of some type coming. He couldn't be sure what, but somehow he felt it was a test of his strengths which meant arms, strength and something else, he couldn't be sure of what.
He studied the pillars again, each one of the demon knights totally stationary. He walked around the edge of what he now thought of as an arena. The last night he touched was the least adorned, but also least covered in dust. He stopped, one hand on his sword, the other a machine pistol. He turned as a sword shot towards his chest, the machine pistol silent. Harry swore, holstering the machine pistol, both hands on the sword. He barely stopped the sword, the edge biting into his skin, drawing blood. Harry was shocked that he was bleeding, which had not happened since the transformation.
The demon knight took a step back, holding his sword in a loose guard. Harry saluted the demon knight with his sword, barely avoiding the attack from behind. He swung his sword behind him, cutting through half of the blade before his sword was ripped from his hands. He dodged another attack, his coat pinned to the ground by the first demon knight. Harry barely escaped from the swing that would have cut his head off. The red leather fell to the floor as Harry punched the second demon knight, the helmet exploding from the force.
During the break Harry caught his breath, he tried to pull his sword free, the metal blade stuck in the other much larger sword. He kicked the flat of the sword, this time the break complete.
'You sneaky bastard,' Harry muttered, Harry getting the feeling the demon knight smiled at him. This time three more activated. The one Harry defeated returned to where it initially stood, its helmet still imploded. Harry kept his sword moving, still keeping an eye out for more surprises. He expected almost anything, except three of the four charging at him. He spun through their strikes his blade striking three times. Each of the knights fell, all of the cuts appearing on the statues as they appeared again. The number increased again, seven demon knights attacking one after the other, Harry barely having time to move from one to the next.
One by one they fell, either decapitated or missing a limb. As they fell they appeared back to where they started, still showing their wounds. The final set of nine activated, all of them surrounding the first one to activate. It was clear Harry would have to attack them, but he gently bounced on the spot for moment, then charged at the knights. He stepped on the blade of one, pushing himself high into the air, two down in a single swing as their heads rolled on the ground. As he landed he rolled forward, two more of them fell as their legs were cut from their bodies. Harry continued to rise two more filling, this time deep cuts in their torso. The final three moved to surround Harry, his smirk only driving them to attack him. Three blades fell, only to be broken as Harry cut through them, then their wielders, nine more statues showing signs of damage.
'Time for you and me,' Harry said, pointing his sword at the first demon knight. He finally saluted Harry, and Harry had a feeling that this demon knight had a smirk just as large as his. Their blades met, instead of cutting through stone, metal met metal in a shower of sparks as the two duelled. The blades increased in speed, Harry sweating as nearly two metres of steel spun around his body so fast he could barely keep track of his blade, let alone the other.
He saw a pattern appear in his opponent, but he had let one appear in his own, a trap that when spun would instantly end the battle. Harry reversed his swing, his blade ringing from the force of the impact. He kicked at the feet of his opponent, bringing the hilt up to this opponent's helmet. The pommel skidded off the helmet the dent following small in comparison to the damage previously done. He turned quickly, as fast as his opponent, their swords met again, both coming away from the strike with definite cracks along the edge. Harry pulled back, letting the point drop before charging at his opponent, the strike aimed for the gap in the side of the armour. The point bounced along the ground, jumping up to avoid the blade he kicked down, his opponents sword breaking as Harry continued to travel horizontally, his sword cleanly passing through the mail and plate. As he continued forwards the demon knight turned, the sword leaving, the door out now obvious as the statue appeared on the other side of the room. Unlike all of the others it returned unscathed, ready for the next challenger.
Harry collected his coat, then with one final salute to the many knights he fought, he walked through the open doors, ready for the next challenge. He saw a virtually empty room, there were two tables, one at end, with a bag of something. Harry guessed it had to get to the other side. He picked up the bag and tried to open it, but it wouldn't. He bounced it in his hands, its weight almost nothing. As he walked towards the other table it grew in weight but not in size. Another two steps and he guessed it was almost fifty kilograms, another one after that an even hundred. He looked around, trying to see if there was something he was missing. He placed the bag on the ground, trying both doors, but they were locked. He returned to the bag, carrying it back to the starting table, but the door back to the courtyard was still locked. He tried the handle again, the gremlin like creature etched behind the knocker grinning maniacally. He thought about the room for a moment, walking back to the bag. He hefted it a few times.
Needs more weight Harry thought, stopping when he guessed it was around a kilogram or so. He studied the room, looking for any sign of currents, and threw the back the back wall. It sailed in a perfect arc, hitting the back wall, and landing on the table. Harry jogged across the room, almost one hundred metres, to the now open door. He looked at the gremlin in this door, and it didn't look happy. He grabbed the heavy iron ringing, knocking on the door. The gremlin looked even angrier after that, its expression almost lethal. Harry strolled into the next room, not prepared for anything, after all he had proven strength of arms and wit.
'That was smart,' echoed in the room, the voice sounding as if it came from a long way back. Harry tried to see the end of the hall, but there was no sign of anything but more hall way. This had lots of portraits in it. Harry looked at the first, which reminded him of Diagon Alley, despite the damage done to it.
'What are they?' Harry called out.
'What could happen, if you don't succeed,' the voice answered. Harry could only describe the voice as impish, there was no other word that suited the high pitched, yet menacing reply he got.
'Alright, so where are you?' Harry asked.
'Behind you,' the imp said. 'You know this part seems silly now.'
'Throwing the bag?'
'Yes, curse Sparda for locking me in this place, and form,' the imp complained. 'I have to ask you riddles to see how good you are. In fact, I know the perfect one. If you get this, then you deserve all of it.'
'Don't you know anything?'
'I'm part demon.'
'You know nothing. No, I'm not explaining it. It's too cliché.'
Harry chuckled at the comment.
'A sense of humour, I like you already. Now I've got a pile of coins, last person to take a coin looses. You can only take one, two or three coins. You can go first because you have a sense of humour,' the imp said, four rows of teeth revealed when it grinned.
'Throwing me a bone?' Harry asked, running through as many combinations as he could. He thought about it for a moment, something telling him to take two coins. 'Two coins, if you insist on letting me go first.'
'Then I'll take one,' the imp replied. It sniggered, something telling Harry to take three.
'Three this time,' Harry said, smirking slightly. He watched as the imp thought for a moment.
'Curses, beaten again!' the imp snarled. Grey skin turned bright red, its tail suddenly revealing a long pointed sting. Its form seemed fluid before it returned to the previous colouring. 'Go, back the way you came. You answer is there.'
'Right, watch the anger,' Harry said. He moved suddenly as the imp spat at him, the faint smell of acid reaching Harry. The imp was flattened by an invisible force, before it slunk off, muttering.
Harry walked back through to where he started, the first demon knight glowing with a soft aura. Silver and gold seemed to be the main colours, why those he didn't know. He touched the wound he caused, now almost closed over. The light leapt from the statue, surrounding him in the aura. Knowledge flooded into his head, unlike what happened with the demonic energy, this time it was far more subtle, patterns of thought that enhanced his own, rather than completely new ideas burned into his mind. He wanted to say he understood, but at the moment he had only just learned whatever it was meant to teach him.
He studied the room, a dark wooden chest, bound in bronze had appeared in the room. He pushed the lid up, nothing but a small amulet in the shape of a broken skull, the crack running down the middle to where the nose should be. He put it on, careful to only handle it with his right hand. He studied the room again, the red rune obvious against the back wall. He touched it, ripped from his feet and back in the ice cavern. He turned to see an even older version of the toad demon. Instead of two tendrils, there were four of them, and try as Harry might, the show that they were putting on was pornographic to put it lightly.
'Is that supposed to distract me?' Harry asked, drawing his blade. 'After everything demon porn is supposed to distract me? They're not that good looking.'
The toad demon roared, chunks of ice almost three times Harry size fell from the ceiling. Sunlight finally reached the interior of the cavern, faint smoke now obvious to Harry's sight. For some reason he seemed to dodge the ice without any effort. The more time he spent dodging, the angrier the toad demon got. Its tongue was caught under a block.
Harry leapt onto the tongue, struggling to run, yet he did so with ease once he got started. The ice broke, the tongue shot back, Harry swallowed. He saw the remains of cattle in the stomach, and a person, but the acid did not touch him. He tried to cut his way free of the stomach, but his sword skimmed on the inner lining. He pushed on it much harder than he had done previously. This time the sword broke through the lining, Harry pulling himself up, using the sword to anchor himself. As he reached the mouth he noticed a soft blue glow surrounding him. He pushed the against the top of the mouth using the guard on his sword to push down, cutting a hole to escape from. He ripped the muscles apart, the lower jaw destroyed. As the creature slumped down in pain a kick reversed the direction of his sword, the demon dead as it tore through the skull, lodged in the ceiling.
As fast as the ice had taken over, it disappeared, nothing but smoke. Harry caught at the side, placing it on his back as the creature faded into the red energy that was often all that was left.