Placeholder A Game of Edges and Points

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Built into the cliffs overlooking the Suvan Sea, Riverfall resides on the edge of grasslands of Cyphrus where the Bluevein River plunges off the plain and cascades down to the inland sea below. Home of the Akalak, Riverfall is a self-supporting city populated by devoted warriors. [Riverfall Codex]

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A Game of Edges and Points

Postby Vypec on May 17th, 2016, 9:20 pm

27th of Spring
Kuvay'Nas Sparring Ring

"Really try to kill me!" Kazma yelled, looking disappointedly at Vypec's failed attempt to slice open the Akalak's neck. Kazma raised the longsword in his hand, blade shining in the sun's brilliant rays. It did not waver in his grasp, poised for a deadly counter strike. The man was the embodiment of Rivarian warrior.

Vypec was panting. His muscled strained to hold the gladius aloft. He had been made anew in the past few weeks of training with the members of the Savages. Each had worked out another of his flaws and proceeded to grind them to dust with painstaking relish. Kazma had taken it upon himself to teach Vypec what he called 'real swordsmanship'. It consisted of a lot of conditioning and a lot of battering. Kazma did not look as though it was a work-out however. He had a slight pant to his breathing, but other than that he was unaffected by the rigorous training. Vypec growled, reaching down to find some anger, some emotion that he could translate into perseverance and endurance. But that longsword was awfully sharp. The harshness of Kazma's regime coupled with his staggering endurance was intimidating.

Vypec lunged forward, half committing to a low swipe. At the last moment he sidestepped and deviated in his attack. Kazma hadn't seen it coming, but he reacted faster than Vypec could have. His sword caught the edge of the gladius and the razor edge of the blade slid around Vypec's defense as Kazma muscled his way in close. The Akalak had Vypec's neck in his hand and the longsword pressed to the soft skin under his jaw before Vypec could think of a counter.

"Good, it isn't enough to know the movements. Everyone knows the movements." Kazma said, releasing the younger Akalak. He waved the longsword in front of him absently as he spoke. "You have to know how to make the tricks look like the movements. Then you have to be willing to end your enemy." The squad leader looked at him intently. "When you fight with the Savages I want everyone who crosses blades with you to pay for that mistake with their lives."

Vypec nodded, his gladius leaping to the ready. He felt the sweat dripping down his face, a minor annoyance. The muscles of his arm throbbed in a dull ache from the prolonged training session. Kazma was less than pitying. He paused long enough to ensure whatever lesson he took the time to impart had been heard, then they were at it again. Vypec was pushed to the point of exhaustion again and again, though the sessions were growing longer. Vypal had said it was a good sign, indicating they were building their endurance. That was, of course, the outlook of someone speaking in hindsight. During these grueling endeavors Vypal stayed silent, keen to observe the squad leader whom he had not yet deemed trustworthy.

Vypec took the skilled leader's words in, trying to project them over his style. To lay feint within feint and make it look simple was a master's skill. He had not even started his Dimakarux training. Vypec stepped lightly to the side, keeping the blade high though his muscles protested. The younger Akalak slid his foot forward, deceptively silent for someone as large as he was. The gladius in his hand thrusting towards Kazma's diaphragm, forcing action. The squad leader, as always, did the opposite of what was expected. He pushed the gladius down with the crossbar of his longsword while angling the blade for a vicious cut at Vypec's leg. Vypec was not committed to the strike, and had seen the move coming. A moment of clarity and focus had given away Kazma's movement with the flexing of his calf as he prepared for the turn.

In that very moment Vypec was able to pull out of the strike enough to reign in any resistance his gladius would have. Kazma kept moving downward whilst Vypec was able to slid to his blind side. He felt a rush of triumph as he pulled his blade around the drag the edge across Kazma's side. But the squad leader simply wasn't there. He had seen the change as it happened, interpreted it, and reacted. The older Akalak was mid-roll when the gladius came round. Vypec spun in fury to slash at ground where his squad leader lay, but too late. The man had already vaulted to his feet and spun to face him. Vypec felt Vypal rumbling within him. The indignation of the failed attempt was fire coursing through them.

Kazma was not smiling. "Good, no more games."
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