• Solo • A Brief Lesson

Once an isolated and dying township, an influx of academics, adventurers and thrill seekers have made Scalvoris Town their home. From scholars' tea shops to a new satellite campus for Viden Academy, this is an exciting place to visit or make your home!

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Doran
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Joined: Sat Sep 03, 2016 3:43 am
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Renown: 1162
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A Brief Lesson

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After The Way of the Sword.

Vhalar 21, Arc 721

Doran had decided to return to the combat festival the trial after he had taught a Menochoros lesson and demonstrated one of his combat techniques, this time as a spectator. He enjoyed the atmosphere at The Proving Ground, more than he had expected. He thought that one should always try to resolve conflicts peacefully, if possible – he was his father’s son in that regard - but he enjoyed teaching and training. He believed that it was important to hone both your body and your mind.

His Eidisi friend Taelis who had helped him the trial before had decided to stay at home this time. Instead, his two assistants, Plia and Harold, who were in a relationship and even talking about getting married now, had accompanied him. Plia wanted to take part in a few lessons, although she refused to actually fight in any of the competitions. She wasn’t confident that she’d do well, even though Doran had assured her that she was good.

“She’s amazing, isn’t she?” Harold, a dark-haired human that was in his late twenties asked and smiled with obvious pride. They were sitting in a covered stand above the arena, enjoying cool drinks and snacks and watching Plia and a couple of other people try out different longsword techniques. The young half Eidisi was neither particularly strong nor fast, but she executed her attacks well, Doran observed.

“She is”, he agreed and inclined his head. “I can see her go far”, he remarked, not because Plia’s boyfriend was sitting next to him, but because he really believed that. Plia had made considerable progress since he had first started teaching her in Viden all those seasons ago. In time, she might even surpass most of the people that she was training with now.

He wanted to say more, and take another sip from his drink, when he heard someone ask, “I hope you don’t mind the interruption, professor, but we heard about your demonstration yesterday and that you are a grandmaster of the sword. We were wondering if you’d be willing to teach us. We would love to learn from someone like you.”

He turned his head and found himself facing a human woman that was in her early thirties, by his estimates, with red hair that she wore in a bun and a lot of freckles. Next to her stood a slightly younger woman with platinum blonde hair and lightly pointed ears that gave him the impression of being a little shy. Both of them carried longswords.

Doran furrowed his brow for a moment – he had said that anybody could learn his special technique given enough time, which was true, but he wasn’t entirely sure if these two women were already advanced enough. He did not wish to turn them down though. He felt honored that they wanted to learn from him, and besides, there might be something that he could show them.

With that thought in mind, he inclined his head.

“I can show you a few moves. I’ll need to have a word with Mister Foy first, of course to make sure there’s enough room in the arena, but I’ll likely be able to make time for you this afternoon”, he offered before he paused slightly and raised an eyebrow questioningly, hoping that the two that were smiling now would get the hint and tell him their names.

“Alisa”, the redhead said before she gestured towards the blonde next to her. “And this is my friend, Selene. We are very grateful”, she added in an enthusiastic tone of voice.

“I told you that there is no reason to be afraid of him”, he heard Alisa tell her friend once they made their way back downstairs – they had probably not expected his hearing to be that good. Selene replied something, but by then, they had moved even further away so that he could not make out exactly what they were saying. Shaking his head in amusement, he focused his attention on Plia again, just as the Eidisi executed an overhead swing.

Harold applauded to his girlfriend. After a moment Doran decided to do so as well.
Notes
From the Scalvoris calendar:

Bramwell Foy has decided to hold the first event ever at The Proving Ground. From the 18th of Vhalar to the 21st of Vhalar, practitioners of various armed and unarmed combat styles will demonstrate their skills and even give short impromptu lessons. To that end, Mister Foy is looking for people that are willing to work for him for one or all four trials. Furthermore, there are competitions where people can test their combat skills, with small prizes to be won, and spectators can enjoy drinks and snacks.
Last edited by Doran on Sun Nov 14, 2021 9:23 am, edited 2 times in total. word count: 804

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User avatar
Doran
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Posts: 3564
Joined: Sat Sep 03, 2016 3:43 am
Race: Mortal Born
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Renown: 1162
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Wealth Tier: Tier 10

Re: A Brief Lesson

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Harold and Plia decided not to join Doran in the afternoon; they decided to head to a café while Doran had a quick word with Bramwell Foy and told him about his waiting to hold another lesson (The manager of The Proving Ground had been in quite a favorable mood.). After he had informed Alisa and Selene of the results of that conversation and told them where and when they would meet again, he went to acquire a few materials. Around the fifteenth break, he returned to The Proving Ground, dressed in a comfortable, yet sturdy outfit in black and silver that would not restrict his movements.

He had also brought one of his swords, a fine longsword that was made of Embersteel. Outside of competitions, he tended to use heavier weapons as that allowed him to hone both his strength and his skill with the blade at the same time. The two women, he noticed as he arrived at the spot in the corner of the arena where he had told them to wait for him, were not alone. A young human male, dark-haired, with light-brown eyes and slightly tanned skin, stood approximately two metres behind them, shuffling his feet a little, as if he were nervous.

Doran’s eyebrows rose.

“Professor Thetys?” the man asked. “I heard these ladies talk about you teaching another lesson this afternoon. I was quite impressed when I heard how you severed a bundle of ropes without even really swinging your sword, and I was wondering if I could join you. Alisa and Selene told me to talk to you”, he admitted. Had his skin not been as dark, a bit of blush would without a doubt have colored his cheeks.

“Of course”, Doran replied and inclined his head. Whether he was teaching two or three people didn’t really make a difference; besides, he wouldn’t turn anybody down unless it couldn’t be avoided. “I’ve thought a bit about what I should teach you. Would you like to learn how to sever a single, free-hanging rope?” he wanted to know. His technique was quite advanced, but he didn’t want to discourage them by telling them that. He would, he decided, teach them a basis that they would be able to build upon instead.

Provided that they were interested, of course.

“We would have been content with just learning a couple of swings …” shy Selene began, but Alisa nudged her and proclaimed, smiling, “We would love to learn that, professor!”

“In that case”,
Doran spoke and inclined his head. “Let me see your swords, please. Rope cutting is first and foremost a matter of striking technique, of course, but how your blade was sharpened and how sharp it is, plays a part as well, as it does in most other aspects of swordsmanship”, he spoke before he checked Alisa’s and Selene’s swords.

“And you, Mister …?” he asked.

“James”, his surprise student quickly supplied and handed him his own sword.

“Alright”, Doran remarked, having come to the decision that their swords were sufficient, grabbed a wooden pole – it was one of the things that he had brought – and firmly drove it into the ground before he attached a hemp rope of moderate thickness to it and attached a weight to the end of the rope which would keep it from swinging as much and make cutting easier.

“I will show you how it is done first, and then I would like you to try and imitate me. I have brought a sufficient number of ropes, so that each of you will get several attempts”, he informed them before he stepped forward. He aligned his blade – the correct angle was quite important – and moved his sword slightly at first, as if to test it, before he executed a quick, powerful and precise strike, cutting the end of the rope off.

All three of his students applauded. A moment later, Alisa stepped forward, eager to give it a try herself now – Doran had attached the weight again, but not replaced the rope as there was still enough left. She swung her sword in a relatively wide arc, but unfortunately, she barely managed to cut through a quarter of it. Furrowing her brow, as if she was confused as to why it hadn’t worked, she turned to Doran who had observed her closely.

“Try striking at this angle”, he told her and showed her what he meant, this time without cutting the rope. “Try to make the angle of contact match the path of your moving arm. At the apex of the strike, quickly switch to a forward position. And center your torso”, he continued and showed her what he meant. “Striking at a certain angle renders your attacks much more effective”, he explained before he gestured for her to give it another try. She did so, managing to cut slightly deeper this time.

He nodded approvingly before he gestured for Selene to give it a try, and finally James before he replaced the rope. None of the three succeeded at first, despite several attempts – even cutting a single rope took a certain amount of skill – until Selene swung her sword. Her cut was far from a clean cut – the rope ended up looking noticeably frayed - but a piece of it did land on the ground. Doran picked it up, removed the weight and handed the piece of rope to her, as if it were a trophy.

She accepted it with a light smile and curtsied.

“This is a technique that you can easily practice at home. Figuring out the correct angle can be tricky, but as with all things, you’ll get better with time”, he told the three of them in order to motivate them. “You can also try it with a knife or a shortsword instead of a longsword. When it comes to just cutting a rope, without hanging it onto something first, I’d suggest a serrated edge. It tends to work better than a straight edge and makes cutting easier”, he added, for the sake of completion.

“Now then”, he spoke a moment later. “There is still time, and I have a couple of ropes left. Does anybody want to give it another try?” he asked. All three of them answered in the affirmative. As he waited for them to get ready once more, he noticed that he seemed to have acquired a small group of spectators. The combat festival was coming to an end – this was the last trial – but he would talk to Mister Foy and see if he could hold lessons at The Proving Ground on a more regular basis, he decided. It seemed as if there might be a demand for it; and besides, he enjoyed passing his knowledge on to others.
word count: 1143

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Re: A Brief Lesson

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Review & Rewards

Name: Doran

Points awarded: 10xp


Knowledge:
Blades: Cutting a free-hanging rope with a weight attached to it
Blades: A serrated edge works best for cutting ropes
Blades: Striking at a certain angle renders your attacks more effective
Blades: How your blade was sharpened plays a part
Strength: Ramming a pole into the ground
Teaching: Motivating students after a failure

Renown: 5 (For teaching another lesson at the festival)

Skill Review: Appropriate to level.

Notes:
It's been awhile since I've reviewed Doran in a combat-ish setting, and this demonstration was a great read!

I enjoyed learning about the consequence Pigs set up for you, and you wrote all the npcs very well. You had a bunch to juggle in this piece but they were all unique and helped push the story forward, which is exactly what they should do.

What I enjoy about Doran is how precise he is in everything he does. Sometimes when one attains the level he has with blades, everything is natural instinct and becomes more challenging to explain to others how they do it, but Doran is different. I think, in part, what makes him an effective swordsman is he pays attention to the little details, and little details add up.

Doran is always a teacher - it's part of who he is, and that shines through in this solo. I've mentioned it before, about his mind constantly working. I'm looking forward to one day having a pc ask him if there is anything that makes his mind settle, because I always visualize him thinking about a million things at once, even though his outward persona is so calm and collected.

This was a great solo for Doran! Enjoy your rewards!


Avalon


word count: 294
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