Closed New Faces (Varrolan)

Samuel and Varrolan meet at the fighting pits.

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This shining population center is considered the jewel of The Sylira Region. Home of the vast majority of Mizahar's population, Syliras is nestled in a quiet, sprawling valley on the shores of the Suvan Sea. [Lore]

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New Faces (Varrolan)

Postby Samuel Longwell on March 5th, 2017, 4:20 pm

New Faces


Date: 2nd Spring 517 AV
Location: The Fighting Pits

Samuel Others


Samuel studied Eli, the huge mercenary who faced him. The knight was no small man, but his opponent towered over even him. Eli was 6”6, a true bear of a man. Samuel was slightly regretting agreeing to spar with Eli, he had been thoroughly outclassed at every turn. Every trick he'd tried had been met with solid resistance and usually ended up with the knight flat on his back. He believed that fighting more skilled opponents was a good way to improve, but it could be a little demoralising being knocked to the ground repeatedly. Gritting his teeth, Samuel lashed out with his right fist. Eli blocked the blow with ease, and drove his own fist into the knight's stomach. Stumbling back, gasping, Samuel managed to deflect the following two blows with his forearms. He even managed to throw another punch before the mercenary started to rain down blows upon him. The knight could do little more than take the hits, occasionally managing to deflect one. Then Eli swept his legs out from under him and Samuel hit the training mat hard. The knight held up his hand in submission, he knew when he was beaten.

Eli sauntered off confidently, clearly pleased with his victory. Samuel pulled himself to his feet, brushing himself down. There was no shame in losing to a more skilled opponent, and he'd felt like he learnt from the experience, but Samuel's pride still stung slightly from the losses. He consoled himself with the fact that he knew that with shield and sword he was more than a match for the oversized mercenary. Rolling his shoulder to loosen it up, the knight stepped off the mats so that other people could use them. As his eyes drifted around the fighting pits they fell upon a young man standing off to the side, looking slightly nervous. Samuel didn't recognise the face, so he walked over to introduce himself.

“Hey lad.” the knight said, “first time at the pits? I'm Samuel, pleased to meet you.” It was unlikely that the young man would realise that Samuel was a knight, only the small silver pin on his tunic denoted his status. As such, and because he was off duty, he didn't make a big deal of the fact. Samuel knew from experience that people were more guarded around people they knew to be knights.
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New Faces (Varrolan)

Postby Varrolan on March 6th, 2017, 10:47 am

Varrolan stirred groggily and let out a low moan as he shifted uncomfortably, his sweaty sheets sticking to him. He reached for the waterskin he always hung next to his bed and blinked in confusion when he found that it wasn't there. Where was he? Varrolan rubbed his eyes but memory caught up to him before he needed to open them again. Traveler’s Row. An Inn built into the city walls of Syliras, the great fortress city and home to the Knights of Syliras. The very Knights he had come here to join.

Cursing his rotten night's sleep, Varrolan dragged himself out of his bed, frowning as he considered whether it had been the heat, smell or noise that had woken him. Probably a bit of all three he decided, wrinkeling his nose as he reached for his plain linen shirt, still grubby with the dust from the previous day's ride. He dressed slowly, trying to settle his thoughts in the midst of the city's clamour. He was uncomfortably aware that his room had no windows and he swallowed hard as he tried to decide what to do. Of rather, considered the when and the how of what he had come to do, to join the Knights. It had seemed so simple, back at Mithryn Outpost but now that he was here...what was he to do? Just walk up to a Knight in the street? The thought didn't sit comfortably with Varrolan and he realised that he was nervous. Perhaps a walk, then? Just to settle myself. I'm fine - All I need is to get out of this petching cave! Glancing about his room, he decided against taking his belongings with him. He nearly took his bow, but without any arrows he might as well be carrying around a stick of wood.

Outside, if you could call it that, the crush of people was even worse than his windowless cell of a room and he found himself pushing his way through the crowd in a mild state of panic. He didn't stop until he was outside the walls of the Citadel and he kept on walking, moving around its circumference. Much better! Now that he was out of the main crush, his earlier panic seemed embarrassingly silly and he allowed himself a chuckle at his own expense as he sauntered towards a small group of people gathered around in a ruined courtyard.

As he approached he could hear a scuffle and as he got closer he could see two men fighting on mats. They were both huge, as far as Varrolan was concerned, though one was still a good few feet taller than the other and clearly had the upper hand. Varrolan winced as the smaller fighter took another fist straight to his gut. Clearly these men weren't Knights. Knights wore armour and fought with swords and spears, everyone knew that! Varrolan himself was looking forward to wearing the kind of armour that could protect him against fist-fighting brutes like these - those punches looked painful!

The fight ended and the larger man strutted off with his nose in the air. Varrolan was about to turn and continue his walk when he noticed that the other man, the one who had lost was walking over to him. Varrolan took a nervous step backwards. Smaller than the other man he may have been, Varrolan was shorter still and unarmed to boot. Truth be told, he also had no idea of what to do in a fist fight.

The man, Samuel spoke and Varrolan blinked. "Ah - And you," he replied automatically. "Varrolan," he added quickly after a moment of silence. "I'm Varrolan." His pride told him to lie to the man and tell him that no, this wasn't the first time he had been here thank you very much. That he had been here loads of times. All the time. But his better sense took hold and he nodded. "Yes, it's my first time. I'm from Mithryn Outpost," he explained instead, waving in the direction he hoped was his hometown. "Only been to Syliras a few times. The Knights don't like people moving around that much. They want us kept safe." Gods, he was talking too much - he didn't want this strange man to think him impolite so he asked the first question that came into his head. "Are you from around here?" He finished lamely.
Last edited by Varrolan on March 7th, 2017, 3:32 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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New Faces (Varrolan)

Postby Samuel Longwell on March 6th, 2017, 6:36 pm

Samuel Others


As Samuel reached the young man, the smaller man seemed to flinch away. The knight smiled wryly as Varrolan introduced himself, he knew that he could look a little intimidating at times but the reaction seemed a little extreme. The probable cause of the reaction occurred to Samuel as Varrolan explained that it was indeed his first time at the pits. The lad probably hadn't seen much sparring in his time, and the size difference between the two was even more marked than that between the knight and his sparring partner. Varrolan may have even thought that Samuel was going to try and drag him onto the mats. From this assessment he guessed that Varrolan wouldn't have much experience with weapons, but that could be changed soon enough. The knight nodded in agreement at the young man's explanation for not having visiting the city that often, people were far easier to protect when they behind the walls of the outpost or the city itself.

“Aye,” Samuel said, “I've lived here my whole life. I love this city, even if the smell can be a little overpowering at times.” The knight winked with these last words, then gestured for Varrolan to follow him as he walked over to the weapon rack. Samuel grabbed a shield and passed it to the younger man. He then smiled mischievously at his new acquaintance and pointed to the assorted weapons on the rack. There were a variety of swords, a couple of war-axes and even a simple mace. All of them were proper, bladed weapons, but they were blunted from repetitive use. They were still dangerous, and should be treated as such, but training accidents were much rarer than would be the case if they were properly sharpened.

“You want to learn?” he asked, “I'll run through some simple drills with you if you want, nothing too dangerous. If you're game, pick up a weapon and come join me.” With these words Samuel grabbed the bluntest longsword he could see and picked up his shield from where he'd left it. Without looking back at Varrolan he strode out into the arena. The younger man could leave if he wished, but the knight hoped that Varrolan would take him up on his offer. More civilians needed to be able to take care of themselves, over-reliance on the knights could make people soft and vulnerable. It was a dangerous world, and even the knights of Syliras couldn't protect their citizens from everything.
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New Faces (Varrolan)

Postby Varrolan on March 8th, 2017, 2:05 am

Varrloan wrinkled his nose for the second time that day. A little overpowering? He was amazed he hadn't been able to smell them all the way from the Outpost and that was twenty five miles away! Samuel was moving, though and beckoning for Varrolan to follow. He did so, if a little hesitantly. What did this man want from...oh.

An involuntary 'ooft' escaped him as he caught the shield Samuel all but threw at him and gaped as the older man selected a sword from the rack. A lesson with this man? He wasn't even a Knight! ....Right? Varrolan glanced about but no one else was paying them any attention. He looked between the rack of weapons and the man striding towards the centre of the open space, trying to make up his mind. On one hand, those weapons looked like they'd cause an awful lot of pain if he got hit with one and Samuel, huge as he was, sure looked like he was capable of knocking Varrolan's block off.

On the other hand, Varrolan reasoned, he'd never actually picked up a sword and shield before. Maybe it would do him so good to have had a bit of a lesson under his belt before going off to join the Knights. Maybe that would help him make a good first impression. In the moments it had taken him to reach his decision, Samuel had made it to the centre and turned back to face him. Being under the gaze of the other man pushed Varrolan over the edge - he didn't want him thinking him a coward, after all!

Casting a quick eye over the rack, Varrolan had to admit he had no idea which one he was meant to pick. Samuel had picked a sword to go with his shield so Varrolan decided he'd be best just following the other man's lead and picked out a sword he figured was as close to a replica of the other man's as he could see. Clutching everything tightly, Varrolan made his way over to the centre of the space, trying to appear confident but knowing deep down that he looked awkward and ridiculous. His cheeks burned red - in his dreams, he'd always held his sword and shield like they were a part of him but now, holding the real things for the first time, they felt..strange. Strange and heavy.

Varrolan wanted to remind Samuel that he'd promised there would be 'nothing too dangerous'...but that was something a coward would do and Varrolan was no coward. Absolutely not.

“So what now?” He asked, trying to appear at ease.
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New Faces (Varrolan)

Postby Samuel Longwell on March 9th, 2017, 8:22 pm

Samuel Others


Samuel watched Varrolan hesitate by the weapons rack, then smiled as the younger man picked up a longsword. The knight was pleased, apparently Varrolan was willing to learn. The younger man seemed to feel awkward, Samuel noticed the slight reddening of his student's cheeks. The knight smiled encouragingly at him in an attempt to reassure his new acquaintance. Once Varrolan had reached him, Samuel plunged his sword into the ground and rapped his shield with his knuckles. Time to see what the lad was made of. The knight wanted to stress the importance of using a shield. He had sparred with a few squires who had avoided training with their shield and that meant they had serious weaknesses that could be exploited.

“First we're gonna start on some shield work.” Samuel began. “The shield is extremely important, not only does it seriously bolster your chances of surviving a fight, it'll actually increase your offensive options too. So for now put your sword down and I'll show you what we're going to practise. Shield bashes are the first thing on the menu.”

Once Varrolan was just holding his shield, the knight stepped forward until the two men were standing close together. The knight stepped forward with his left foot, tapping his shield gently against his student's shield, then back into his starting position. Again he stepped in, but this time he swung his shield with a little more force. The metal rang out as the weapons clashed together. After resetting once more, Samuel paused a moment and then struck at Varrolan with a shield bash. The knight held back, Varrolan was clearly new to using a shield and Samuel didn't want to bowl him over. But he attempted to put enough force into the blow that the younger man would stumble back a step or two.

“Right lad,” Samuel instructed, “now it's your turn. You're going to slowly increase the force of your strikes and on the fourth I want you to try and knock me on my backside. No holding back, you'll need to throw all your weight behind the blow if you're going to budge me.” Once the knight had explained the exercise, he took half a step backwards. Placing his right foot two feet behind his left, he bent his knees slightly, he prepared himself to absorb the force behind Varrolan's blows.

“Ready when you are,” he said. “let's see what you've got, eh lad?”
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New Faces (Varrolan)

Postby Varrolan on March 10th, 2017, 1:23 pm

Varrolan reluctantly did what he was instructed and put down his sword, out of his way so he wouldn't be in danger of tripping over it. He had to admit, he was a little disappointed that they were starting with the shield, quite certain that it couldn't possibly be as interesting. Any such thoughts were quickly dispelled when Samuel starting tapping away with his shield.

The first two weren't too bad, even if Varrolan didn't quite see the point of it. He tried his best to mirror the way the other man was holding his shield but he wasn't sure he was doing it right. When Samuel's third strike came, Varrolan staggered backwards, nearly falling over from the force of the blow. What had Samuel called it? A shield bash? He frowned in concentration as he set about trying to replicate what the larger man had just done. He took a step forward with his right foot and brought his shield up to try and give a light tap. No no, that felt wrong. With the shield on his left side and his right foot forward, he had to bring it around his body. Adjusting, he stepped forward with his left foot instead and tried another forward push of his shield.

Varrolan looked up at Samuel's face, eager to find some sign of whether or not he was doing it correctly. Unable to discern anything in the other man's expression, he persisted for another two swings. With his final attempt, he swung with all his might, grunting with the effort. In doing so, he misjudged the distance between them and lost his balance, only managing to scrape the other man's shield. Well that was petching awkward.

Varrolan gave the bigger man a rueful smile. "Hang on, let me try that last one again." Eager to redeem himself, he gave another full bodied swing before waiting for any permission...and nearly yelped out loud at the jarring impact of shield on shield. That hadn't felt right either and it had hurt. A lot. "How was that?"
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New Faces (Varrolan)

Postby Samuel Longwell on March 11th, 2017, 8:58 pm

Samuel Others


Samuel counted the blows as they increased in force. One, two, three and... The corner of the knight's mouth curled up as Varrolan slipped on his final bash, barely making contact between the two shields. Samuel nodded as his student prepared himself to strike again. His student's next attempt was far more successful, forcing the knight to take a small step backwards as the two shields crashed together. Samuel grunted, vibrations running up his arm from the impact. He shook his arm and grinned at Varrolan, the lad was getting the hang of it.

“That was pretty good,” Samuel answered, nodding his approval, “now we're going to try it on the move. You're going to have to work out how to hold your ground when someone hits you with your shield. First one to hit the ground each round loses, we'll have a few goes and see what happens.” There was a twinkle in the knight's eyes as he spoke, Samuel found that a bit of competition always helped when training. He wasn't expecting the younger man to be able to knock him over, but it was far from impossible.

The knight started to circle round Varrolan, bouncing slightly on his feet. Perhaps there was a way for him to practise something new at the same time as teaching the younger man. Samuel decided that he would try tripping his student up. The technique could come in handy in a real fight, it would possibly be even more useful when both combatants were fully armoured and their mobility was decreased. Samuel had found that quite often these tricks only worked against a person once, but in an actual life or death situation once was all you needed.

“You ready?” Samuel asked. As soon as the reply came, the knight leapt forwards. He tried to hook his left leg around the back of Varrolan's right ankle, while simultaneously bashing with his shield. It was a little ambitious, the knight hadn't tried something like this before. Samuel's long legs certainly helped mitigate this, but the difficulty of the manoeuvre meant that the shield bash had much less power behind it than the knight had hoped.
Last edited by Samuel Longwell on June 1st, 2017, 11:24 am, edited 1 time in total.
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New Faces (Varrolan)

Postby Varrolan on March 14th, 2017, 12:43 pm

Varrolan beamed as the older man expressed his approval. Maybe he hadn't made as big a fool of himself as he'd first thought. Maybe he had done well for a first-timer! Or maybe he's just being nice, you fool. His smile faded and hardened with resolve as Samuel described his next task. Of course the big man was just being nice - he'd have to work much harder if he was going to impress him, let alone the Knights.

From what Varrolan could tell, Samuel seemed to be enjoying himself - maybe he too enjoyed a bit of competition. Not that Varrolan himself was really that competitive. No. He just liked to win was all.

"Absolutely," He replied when he was asked if he was ready. "Whoa!" Samuel had closed the distance between them in no time at all and Varrolan found himself stumbling backwards as he hastily hefted his shield to try and blunt the attack...only to trip spectacularly as his feet unexpectedly connected with something solid. A soft 'Oooft' escaped as the air slammed out of his chest as he hit the ground and tumbled. Wheezing for air, he lifted himself slowly, picking up his shield from where it had fallen. With his free hand, he wiped the dirt from his face. Petch.

"Right, well that's one to you, then." Here goes. Let's see what you do about this! Lifting his shield so that it was in front of him, he charged, trying to catch Samuel by surprise. It was a blind, reckless rush, with no form or thought behind it other than trying to bowl the other man over with sheer force.
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New Faces (Varrolan)

Postby Samuel Longwell on March 14th, 2017, 9:48 pm

Samuel Others


Samuel hadn't expected his attempt to work so well. He reasoned that Varrolan's inexperience had been the main factor behind it, so there was no real pride in his victory. Samuel nodded as the young man pulled himself to his feet. Varrolan hadn't been put off by being knocked down, something that Samuel admired. Although it seemed that his student had been a little tentative at first, Samuel noticed that the younger man was really getting into the swing of the lesson.

“Aye lad,” Samuel replied, “you'll know to watch for that trick next time huh?” The knight was intentionally hinting his next plan of action. The next opportunity he got he was going to try and trip Varrolan in precisely the same manner he had just done so. Once his student worked out how to prevent it Samuel could start to switch up the tactics. The knight thought it would be a good way to teach, he had been taught in a similar way occasionally in his youth.

Varrolan surprised the knight by rushing at him, shield raised. Samuel smiled grimly as he lifted his own shield and waited for the smaller man to get close. At the last moment he sidestepped to the right, trying to avoid the charge. The idea was to knock Varrolan over as he passed, but the knight moved too late and the sides of the shields crashed together. The impact pushed the two men in opposite directions, throwing them both off balance. Samuel staggered, barely keeping his footing, unable to capitalise on his opponent's own lack of balance.

Stepping away to give himself some more room, the knight grinned. “Almost had me there,” Samuel said, still smiling, “I guess I'm getting old. Be careful when charging in so blindly though, if I'd been a little quicker you'd probably have been sent flying.” He would have to be more careful in the future, it would be a little embarrassing to be knocked down by someone who seemed like they hadn't picked up a shield before.

Once Varrolan had recovered his balance, Samuel leapt forwards once more. His leg outstretched, the knight tried to hook his student's leg and knock him over again. Perhaps the younger man would be quick enough to avoid the trick this time, or find another way to deal with Samuel's attack.
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New Faces (Varrolan)

Postby Varrolan on March 18th, 2017, 1:15 pm

Varrolan very nearly fell over yet again as his shield caught the side of his opponents shield as he charged through. Samuel seemed off balance and Varrolan tried to stumble back over to press his advantage but found himself far too off balance to do more than prevent himself from falling over. The older man recovered first and Varrolan clutched at his shoulder grimly. He'd always thought shields were meant to protect you from getting hurt - how ironic that they were now the reason his body was bruised and aching. What was it that Samuel had said earlier? Something about boosting his offensive capability. Varrolan was starting to see that the man could well be right.

He grinned ruefully as the older man suggested he might be getting too old. Not likely. It was a fair comment about the blind charging and he nodded attentively - he wanted to learn, he wanted to impress the Knights...though Varrolan couldn't help feel slightly chuffed at having almost knocked the other man over. After all - this guy was huge! At least, huge compared to himself.

Samuel was ready and Varrolan raised his shield again in what he hoped was an appropriate stance. He guessed it was close enough to the way Samuel was standing but really, he still had no idea. Just as Varrolan thought he had the stance right, the other man jumped forward to attack him again. He raised his shield instinctively and ducked his head as he reflexively tried to protect his face. With his head pointing to the ground, he watched as Samuel's leg again darted out, trying to trip him again. Odd, how he couldn't seem to do anything about it. His feet just didn't seem to know what to do. They stumbled sideways and apart, as if of their own accord. So it was that when Samuel's shield impacted with his own, his feet were splayed awkwardly and his balance was non-existent. Again, in spite of his best efforts to right himself, he fell.

Two more bouts later and he was becoming far too familiar with the taste of dirt. Varrolan set his shield into the ground and leaned on it heavily. "Thanks for showing me that," he said, panting. "You're pretty good - where did you learn all that? Did the Knights teach you?" Varrolan didn't really know how good this man was but he was definitely better than he was and it seemed the polite thing to say. Besides, he didn't like to think that a novice could have defeated him so soundly - his pride demanded that the other man be an excellent and experienced fighter.
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