Duncan begins his first day at yet another new school, trying to fit in despite his appearance. However, there are a great many obstacles to this goal, particularly his new principal and a bully named Troy. He does, however, make a few friends amongst other outcasts. At his father's, Duncan goes through a rough training for the weekend. Belloc is training him not only to be powerful, but he wants Duncan to learn things the hard way. Duncan goes back to school where he has a principal that doesn’t want him there and a jerk that won’t get off his case. So for a little payback, Troy tries to set Duncan up by hiding a gun. It works, but the reaction is far more than what Troy wanted. This leads to Duncan seriously thinking about his control over his emotions and if he truly belongs in the world with humans. When he returns home, it is demolished and Margaret is missing. He tracks down his mother and her kidnapper, a monster from Monster Island. He and the monster have a brutal fight which ends (at least as far as Duncan is concerned) with Duncan blasting the monster with flame, leaving the monster badly burned but alive. This changes when Belloc arrives on the scene and impales the monster with his tail. Duncan figures out that Belloc arranged the kidnapping to test him and threatens to kill him if he ever endangers his mother again. After Duncan flies away, Belloc smiles to himself, saying "That's my boy.