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Talaban Morenae Gaidin
Return to the fray
Wed Aug 30, 2006 09:14 (XFF:

Talaban listened stonily, practicing the expressionless look that many of the Warders favoured. Halfway between apathy and boredom, it seemed appropriate as, in the background, voices droned on. He felt old. Not the kind of back aching, muscle wrenching kind of old, but old all the same.

“He’s ruining all the trainees, teaching them non-regimental techniques. I had to spend three days undoing his…,” Talaban listened briefly to the noise in the room before slipping back into his stony reverie. He did not even bother to think of the other man’s name. Some jumped up Sei’Tar who had just attained the fancloth, he knew that much. Besides, it was not the first time the newer generation of Gaidin had levelled this accusation at him. Something about teaching students in the old style and ruining this newfangled method they seemed to have come up with. They really ought to know better, that there was more than one way in existence for fighting.

Silence. It was his cue to say his piece. Talaban smiled grimly, this was getting to be an old and tiresome argument. “Well, we’ve been through this before I believe and this time, I have a lesson to teach. If you’re not happy with the way I teach stances and forms, don’t send your students to me. You can take them yourself,” without waiting, Talaban spun on his foot and left, letting the oaken doors swing shut behind him, the thick wood cutting off another stream of protests from the young Gaidin.

Talaban returned to the training yards, striding comfortably, putting the argument out of his head. It was an old issue, in truth, and he could hardly be bothered. Spread out within the yard, the trainees were busy practicing whatever Carrick had assigned them to do. It seemed like they were practicing drawing of weapons. Sighing, Talaban hurried forward.

He was as glad to regain control of the class as Carrick was to relinquish it. Gathering all the trainees, Tal apologized for his absence. “Let’s begin all over,” some heads nodded as the Gaidin began again. Knives were a particularly touchy subject and it was important to knock some silly ideas of their heads without delay.

“First up, get any notions of honourable knife fights and extended battles out of your head. They don’t exist. Period. If you are forced to draw a knife, it’s either for assassination or self-defence. Get this clear. Duels don’t happen when you wield a knife like some hero against a man with a sword. He’ll spit you like a turkey.”

The babble took awhile to die down. Hopefully, that knocked the thought out of some of the would-be heroes. “The best way to fight with knives and blades is the most sensible one. Put distance between yourself and you opponent. It doesn’t matter what he’s using. He can’t hurt you if he can’t reach you. So the first thing we’ll explore will be throwing knives and blades.”

“Now from the basics. Knives are bladed weapons, typically around 9 inches in length or shorter. They can be single or double edged and be balanced for different purposes, though most knives serve well both for throwing and close quarters skirmishing. For this lesson, I will cover both throwing and knife-work. Later, I want each of you to go the table and pick out a set of knives. All those displayed are in identical sets of ten strapped together. Try them all out and find something that is ideal for throwing. The knife must be of a weight that you are comfortable with. This is the most important factor. Balance comes next. All the knives here are well balanced but those that you find elsewhere might not be so, do remember to get a feel of your weapon. Now, on to throwing. There are many ways to actually launch a knife. I will demonstrate each of them.”

Picking up a bunch of knives from the table, Talaban turned to face the targets. Sliding one knife into the empty sheath at his belt, he returned to a static position, arms by his sides before whipping his left arm for the knife. It left the sheath on his left hip, travelling in and upward arc. His body coiled slightly as the Gaidin released the blade when it was around the height of his face. The empty hand went on the complete the arc. Standing straight again, he told the intently watching trainees, “That was a cross-body underhand throw. An underhand throw is executed when the knife leaves your palm as your hand travels from a lower to higher point. There are many ways to execute an underhand. It is good for situations involving speed, stealth or surprise but lacks power. Even the body coil I showed you can only increase the force behind it by a little.”

"From the overhand position, which I will demonstrate next, you can get much better arm and wrist-snap motion, and therefore more power. This, coupled with more aiming time generally results in a higher success rate of whatever you were trying to do with the knife. The disadvantage of throwing overhand is that it's a little slower, it takes milliseconds more to get into position, and is far more easily read. Now, before I show you an overhand throw, I have to tell you that this method differs from an underhand throw in several aspects. Firstly, the difference between a handle-throw and a blade-throw. If you execute a handle-throw, there should preferably be no tumbling of the weapon en-route to its target. Tumbling detracts from the power of a handle-throw since that is just not the way handle-thrown blades are meant to travel. The application of force from your arm is not correctly poised for tumbling. Blade-throws are very different. The natural cycle of a blade-throw means that the moment the blade leaves your hand, the tendency is for it to tumble. The knife perpetuates its own penetrating force by tumbling. Another thing that is very different about blade-throws is that you must know your weapon well. It’s weight and balance directly affect its tumble rate and judging accurately could mean the difference between hitting something with blade or butt. Now, I will demonstrate.”

Turning to face the targets again, Talaban picked up another knife. Holding it by its hilt, he raised his hand to the height of his eyebrow. Drawing back his arm so that the hand remained at that height, Talaban released by sending forward his arm in a straight path. Making sure the students noticed the point of release, Talaban demonstrated the blade-throw next. This time, his hand started over his head and was brought down in an arc. The knife was released within the arc, tumbling to land perfectly, blade first within the target. Talaban also showed the students how to throw a blade. A blade possessed a different dynamic to knives, since it possessed no hilt. They could be released easily by either overhand method from a cross-chest bandolier.

"The next point is judging of distance. Since it is a medium ranged weapon, we will practice with targets 15 feet away. Its maximum range is about 20 feet. Not as far as a javelin, spear, or bow, but much better than, say, a sword or axe. Beyond that range, the fall, tumble, and target motion are generally too unpredictable to permit good accuracy.

Now, the importance of correctly judging the distance is that you must correctly adjust the tumble and arc (if any) of the knife and throw. If an enemy is only five feet away, for example, an underhanded throw by the handle would probably be most appropriate, since the weapon has little distance to cover, and will not, therefore, require a lot of power to get there. Also, your target may be closing fast, and you want to get the throw off quickly. Finally, a short-range handle throw generally has little or no appreciable tumble, so the blade will go straight into the target. Now, just pick a target each and practice your throwing. I will come round and correct your technique individually.”

The quickest of the trainees were up within moments, grabbing knives and lining up in a straight line to aim at targets mounted on the trees at the edge of the forest.

OOC: Hi Kate, its nice to be able to RP. Am trying to pick this lesson up from where it got dropped off, so bear with me.

  • Nose to the GrindValla Karajan, Aethan'Tar, Tue Aug 29 07:24
    A flat stare said it all for Valla. She knew it could be disconcerting. It was part of the fun. Unfortunately, this new Gaidin -Carrick- didn't seem to have much of a sense of humor. He was very much ... more
    • Return to the fray — Talaban Morenae Gaidin, Wed Aug 30 09:14
      • It's A Mess Out Here, SirValla Karajan, Wed Aug 30 17:32
        Reluctantly Valla relinquished the previously chosen knife, slotting it into a free space in the wooden carrying block with a somewhat piqued air. Changes in tutor during a lesson was nothing new,... more
        • Up Close and PersoalTalaban MOrenae Gaidin, Fri Sep 1 16:33
          Talaban waited patiently as the students gathered their blades and returned slowly to him. The session on throwing had been informative for most of them, the trainees discovering that not all the... more
          • CharmingValla Karajan, Aethan'Tar, Sun Sep 3 07:54
            He stared at her impassively. She smiled wickedly. It was a match. Valla had chosen two knives to spar with, her partner just the one. His choice of a single blade was puzzling; the more weapons the... more
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