Completed Edge-a-cation V

Tazrae and Gracelin talk about machetes.

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Syka is a new settlement of primarily humans on the east coast of Falyndar opposite of Riverfall on The Suvan Sea. [Syka Codex]

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Edge-a-cation V

Postby Tazrae on May 31st, 2022, 1:07 am

Timestamp: 72nd of Spring, 522 A.V.


Continued From: Edge-a-cation Part IV



Tazrae was sweating heavily from the effort of the footwork and keeping the machete down where she could strike from the four-count starting position. She instinctively reached up with her off hand and braced it a time or two, which Gracelin nodded to and commented on. “Good. If you strike with an off-hand brace, you can generate more power and turn your strike into an assisted strike which will give you more reach to penetrate tougher things like thick hide or armor.” The woman instructed. “Try it Taz… reach out in a strike. How far can you go? With the machete you have now, you can thrust out at least six feet with your body behind the blade protected. With Sweet Refrain, you’ll have another foot or foot and a half I’m betting. That’s on caliber with a sword.” She added.

Taz gave it a try, judging the distance, and thrust out repeatedly, both braced and unbraced in her attempts. She got far more reach unbraced and if her feet were in the right place, she was stable for the stretch and thrust. It was something she could appreciate. However, Gracelin soon had her switching and she was working on a rear striking position, contrasting it with her forward position and discovering how limited her reach was with that attack.

Gracelin was a good teacher, Tazrae decided.

She was providing Tazrae with stability and reach, while at the same time facilitating movement. The Innkeeper could appreciate that a great deal. And because Gracelin was giving her the qualities the machete had with a choice between them, it was giving her an advantage she simply didn’t have before.

When Taz was sweating hard enough, she thought about calling a halt to the training, Gracelin backed her down from the physical to let her brain take over some of the work while her body recovered its ability to breathe. As Taz gasped like a fish out of water, winded from the thrusts and switching the footwork all around, Gracelin introduced her to a new topic…. “Targeting”.


“Taz, you have to understand that with any machete, a solid strike will most likely be life-threatening. Machete’s leave large wounds that almost always cause your enemy to bleed out over time. Just don’t assume, once you land a solid strike, that the fight will be over. Most people in the heat of the battle don’t even realize they’ve been dealt a terrible wound until after they’ve kept fighting a while. When we get battle juices flowing in our system, that blood flow can mask a lot of damage and keep you on your feet fighting or even running long past the time you should have actually dropped. It’s up to you to continue the fight until you or someone else has stopped the threat against you." Gracelin said.


"Now, saying all that… I’m going to point out that some strikes are more lethal than others. For example, a machete in the skull will drop someone dead more than likely. Chopping a neck open will do the same thing and they’ll bleed out in seconds. These are instant kill strikes. But they aren’t necessarily the best targets for you to aim for because often they are the best and most well-guarded places.” Gracelin instructed.


Tazrae did as she asked.
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"A mark of an open mind is being more committed to your curiosity than your conviction.
The goal of learning is not to shield old views against new facts, but to revise old views with new facts.
Ideas are possibilities to explore, not certainties to defend."


Garden Beach Syka The Protea Inn

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Edge-a-cation V

Postby Tazrae on June 28th, 2022, 5:20 am

Taz nodded. “I naturally protect my head and neck in a fight. I almost always do so and its not a conscious thought thing either. Its instinctual and probably the thing I’m fastest at protecting.” The young bard admitted, shaking her head. “I can’t imagine anyone else being much different.” She said, a little less winded.

Gracelin nodded.

“You probably won’t hit the head or neck and will end up striking a forearm thrown up to block by instinct alone. And let’s face it, the arm is one exceptional target too. So if you can feign a head-shot and hit an arm cleanly that’s thrown up to block, you are scoring a win for your side of the fight. If an arm badly wounded, it can’t hold a weapon. And with a solid machete strike to an arm, especially one thrown up to block, odds are you are going to do a lot of traumatic damage to the muscle tissue that cords the arm.” Gracelin paused there, stepped back, and Taz lowered her machete.

Taz nodded, showing she was listening carefully.

“Arms are corded with muscle that travel up and down our bones. Those muscles are made up of different fibers that travel across each other. If they are not allowed to move against each other, they don’t operate. If you slice into the arm, the opponent could easily loose the use of the arm because of the muscles being cut. An enemy that can’t use his or her arm can’t shoot you with an arrow, hit you with a fist, or slice your throat open with a machete. And honestly, Tazrae? Legs work the same way, especially thighs. And what’s even better about the leg or thigh? If they can’t use it, often they can’t stand and fight or run. You are going to make a stationary immobile opponent dead faster than a mobile opponent that’s in motion.” She added. “And not only can you kill them if you need too… but you can escape if that’s your priority.” Gracelin finished; certain she was teaching the girl the right way to be brutal. They both understood, together, that there was no ‘escape’ here. These scenarios were all kill or be killed.

Taz nodded. “Where I come from, we’d never talk about fights in terms of who lives or dies. It’s very different here. If you are fighting someone in a situation like this… you kill them, don’t you? You don’t drag it out. You just make the other person dead as fast as you can to save yourself.” She mused, shaking her head. Falyndar was wilder than most places. And it was a hard realization she was coming too. But it was one she was accepting.

“So what other good targets are there? I know you talked about hands, arms, and even slicing off fingers.” Taz said, her caramel eyebrows lifting in question.

Gracelin smiled. “They will guard hands and fingers equally if not more than heads and necks. Another target is the waist. I know that sounds like an odd one, but its frequently wide open, accessible with your reach, and has the least amount of bone protecting it. Outright chopping at the waistline is one way to get to soft organs – the intestines – without worrying about getting hooked up in bones along the way and maybe getting your blade stuck or lodged in some sort of internal skeletal structure.” The woman instructed. “And it is incredibly painful and debilitating.” She added.
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"A mark of an open mind is being more committed to your curiosity than your conviction.
The goal of learning is not to shield old views against new facts, but to revise old views with new facts.
Ideas are possibilities to explore, not certainties to defend."


Garden Beach Syka The Protea Inn

"Listen to the wind, it talks. Listen to the silence, it speaks. Listen to your heart, it knows."
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Edge-a-cation V

Postby Tazrae on June 28th, 2022, 5:22 am

Taz nodded. “Stabbing at the heart or lungs, you run into the rib cage that protects them. You can easily get your machete hooked into a rib there, and the opponent is going to lunge backward and probably drag you off your feet as they do so trying to evade you.” She said thoughtfully.

Gracelin nodded enthusiastically. “We call these gut shots, Taz. It’s one of the most terrible ways to die because it spreads fecal matter from your intestines and stomach acid from your stomach to all other parts of the body and guarantees infection and very painful death without a serious Rak’keli healer there on-site to treat you immediately. It will give you a win in a battle, for sure. And I don’t want you to be afraid to use it. There is very little honor in life and death when it comes to trading blows with weapons. Your goal is to survive. That’s it. Kill them before you are killed. You picked a weapon that can do this nicely. Use it.” Gracelin said as Taz began running through her footwork again while letting what Gracelin said sink in.

“So… let's teach you the four-count weapon angles next. We use these for attack and defense.” Gracelin told Taz, gesturing for the young woman to halt her footwork and pay close attention. “Most weapons styles and disciplines will teach a forehand diagonal slash as an initial attack. It’s an instinctual move under stress and easy to do. They also use a powerful natural stroke that is a return cut that’s a backhand diagonal. We aren’t much different when wielding machetes. The only difference is we use a four-count way of attacking that works with our footwork and flows better from our diagonal slash, which is always high to low. The four diagonals I’m going to teach you to create a big X across the body and are some of the most common attack strokes you will see. These moves….” Gracelin demonstrated nicely, moving slowly so Tazrae could follow both the footwork and the arm motions. “… are versatile and can be used when standing still, with or without a training partner, and while moving and utilizing your footwork.” She added, studying Tazrae thoughtfully.

Taz nodded, watching Graclin’s demonstration, then paused, looking thoughtful. “It feels like I need to use a diagonal slash, like with my forehand, if things get rocky.” The young Innkeeper said.

Gracelin nodded her understanding but shook her head firmly. “That’s common. We call it a first angle. Also, people use a second angle. It’s a powerful natural stroke called a return cut… which is a backhand diagonal.” Gracelin said, demonstrating with her own machete, stepping back and then forward again to display her natural grace and pose when it came to the weapon. Taz admired it, then copied the moves, nodding, knowing her first instinct was right.

“We use a four-count way of attacking, Taz, that flows naturally from our diagonal slash… moving high to low. We call them angles of attack. There are four of them. The first two we actually just saw. Those two naturally diagonal forehand slashes… they cut across the body forming a sort of X in front of you that is our kill zone. It’s a four-count because it keeps up with our footwork and makes us somewhat deadly in a fight if we are disciplined enough to understand the angles and footwork, flexible enough to step outside of them whenever we need to be unpredictable or fight counter-intuitively.” She added, then moved to stand beside Tazrae and demonstrate. “All other attacks derive from these motions.” She interjected, moving through them and demonstrating.
Image
"A mark of an open mind is being more committed to your curiosity than your conviction.
The goal of learning is not to shield old views against new facts, but to revise old views with new facts.
Ideas are possibilities to explore, not certainties to defend."


Garden Beach Syka The Protea Inn

"Listen to the wind, it talks. Listen to the silence, it speaks. Listen to your heart, it knows."
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Tazrae
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Edge-a-cation V

Postby Tazrae on June 28th, 2022, 5:23 am

“Forehand diagonal slash. Angle 1.” She said, starting high on her left side and slashing to the right in a downward motion. “Angle 1, starts high, ends low, cutting diagonally from right to left across the body. “ She explained, elaborating and demonstrating. “Angle 2 starts high and ends low also, cutting diagonally across the body from left to right as a backhanded return motion from angle 1.” Gracelin said, moving slowly, almost like some of the stretching exercises that Taz had been taught.

She mimicked Gracelin’s motion, slowly practicing until she had a handle on both Angle 1 and Angle 2’s fundamental motions. At that point, Gracelin moved on.

“Angle 2 tends to start low to high, diagonally across the body from where the Angle 2 ended, and was a mirror of the first two only done in reverse and from bottom to top.” She said, demonstrating. “It’s a backhand return motion to reset you to Angle 1.” She added. “Angle three is the Angle 1 preformed from bottom to top while Angle 4 is the Angle 2 executed from bottom to top. These moves work together causing your blade to be in constant motion and doing constant damage or always being in place to block if you are paying attention.” She added, then stood back and called angles to Tazrae, watching the young Innkeeper struggle to perform whatever angle she called as she called it, all the while minding her feet and keeping her four-square motion going.

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By the time that part of the lesson was done, Taz had the four angles firmly in her mind and could recount them in her sleep. Gracelin did a fantastic job of explaining it and for some reason, the Vantha woman didn’t intimidate or make Tazrae feel shy about dragging out her weapons. In fact, Gracelin had done a wonderful job of dragging Tazrae out of her fighting shell and bringing her combat up to where it should be for her age.

“Okay, smooth it out. Get it to flow. Let's see it all put together, Tazrae. Run through this like you are all on your own, no one is around and you are practicing. Tell me what you are doing when you do it.” She added, wanting the young human to talk herself through the training, knowing it would stick to her brain better.

Taz took a brief break to swallow, grab a pull of water from her waterskin, and then set her feet and started with her machete in her upper quadrant. She knew she had to concentrate on flow, while keeping the blade moving, and her feet shifting in conjunction. Taz also realized her breath had to be right as well or her blows would be awkward and not backed by the power she knew was in her body.
Image
"A mark of an open mind is being more committed to your curiosity than your conviction.
The goal of learning is not to shield old views against new facts, but to revise old views with new facts.
Ideas are possibilities to explore, not certainties to defend."


Garden Beach Syka The Protea Inn

"Listen to the wind, it talks. Listen to the silence, it speaks. Listen to your heart, it knows."
User avatar
Tazrae
Be savage, not average.
 
Posts: 1246
Words: 1808035
Joined roleplay: May 3rd, 2020, 2:02 pm
Location: Syka
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Edge-a-cation V

Postby Tazrae on June 28th, 2022, 5:23 am

With her machete upheld she started forward using Angle one to slice down and across her body. Then in a natural carry-through she brought the blade behind and up to her left quadrant, then swung it down and across her body diagonally in the Angle 2 move. Taz then flipped the machete to reverse its direction without interrupting its flow and brought it up and across her body in an Angle 3 move. Then finally the blade made another swoop behind and down so she could be in position for the final Angle 4. Once that motion was completed opposite of Angle 3… she shifted back to Angle 1 and slide through the whole motion again.

Gracelin nodded her approval as Taz found that once she was looped up, behind and down, then up and across her body, she could keep a rhythm going that was astonishing. She could actually hear the blade sing to her and she practiced for a good long time, just feeling the blade as part of her and an extension until Gracelin called a halt.

Taz was winded hard by that time and Gracelin smiled at her as she sheathed her machete and took another pull from her waterskin.

“You are doing great. You are picking up this machete faster than I thought you would. I think here is a good place to break it up. You now just need to practice and practice until that blade feels like an extension of your arm. Once you are there, you come back and we’ll definitely move on to the next set of lessons. I’ll have you learning a four step plus a four-count movement which is a strike and counterstrike. You’ll love it… some of the most useful bladework you can have in the jungle and up against someone with a sword or dagger.” She added. “And once you come back, we’ll go through some basic fighting tactics, specifically those associated with the machete. All weapons don’t take to all tactics equally. Some have more or less ethics.” She added.

Taz nodded, pulled a towel from her backpack, and began to towel off. Gracelin nodded towards the water. “You sure you just don’t want a quick swim? It will refresh you for the trip home and wash off all that sweat.” The Vantha suggested.

Taz laughed. “You had me at clean.” And at that point the two women stripped down, dove for the water, and talked and played in the little estuary for quite a while before Tazrae gathered her stuff, dressed, and headed off to the Inn with a wave. Gracelin promised to visit her at the Inn for her meals without letting too much time pass.

Words: 2676
Image
"A mark of an open mind is being more committed to your curiosity than your conviction.
The goal of learning is not to shield old views against new facts, but to revise old views with new facts.
Ideas are possibilities to explore, not certainties to defend."


Garden Beach Syka The Protea Inn

"Listen to the wind, it talks. Listen to the silence, it speaks. Listen to your heart, it knows."
User avatar
Tazrae
Be savage, not average.
 
Posts: 1246
Words: 1808035
Joined roleplay: May 3rd, 2020, 2:02 pm
Location: Syka
Race: Human
Character sheet
Storyteller secrets
Journal
Plotnotes
Medals: 5
Mizahar Grader (1) Overlored (1)
One Thousand Posts! (1) One Million Words! (1)
Syka Seasonal Challenge (1)

Edge-a-cation V

Postby Tazrae on June 30th, 2022, 3:00 am

Grading!


Tazrae -

Machete +5, Endurance +5, Logic +2, Tactics +5, Medicine +2

Machete: Using Brace and Unbraced Techniques, Machete: The Importance Of Stability & Reach, Machete: Facilitate Movement, Machete: Which Types Of Strikes Are Like-Threatening, Machete: Leave Large Wounds, Tactics: Don’t Assume A Fight’s Over After A Solid Strike, Tactics: Delayed Realization Of Wounds In Battle, Tactics: Battle Heat Can Mask Damage, Machete: Skull Strike Will Drop An Opponent, Machete/Tactics: Insta-Kill Strikes Aren’t Necessarily The Best Targets To Strike – Best And Most Well-Guarded Places, Tactics: Blocking Vital Parts Instinctive, Tactics: Feign Head-Shot, Strike Arm Cleanly, Tactics: Wounded Arm Can’t Hold A Weapon, Medicine: Anatomy Of An Arm, Tactics: Thighs Vulnerable, Tactics: Leg Out Of Commission/Can’t Stand, Tactics: Strike Legs For Escape, Tactics: Live Or Die Fights – You Do Anything To Live, Tactics: Slice Off Fingers To Disable Hand, Tactics: Vulnerable Target Is Waist, Anatomy: Waist – Least Amount Of Bones Protecting The Tissue, Tactics: Chopping Waistline Direct Route To Vulnerable Organs – Intestines, Tactics: Pain Is Debilitating In A Fight, Tactics: Avoid Stabbing Lungs/Heart… Get Hung Up In Ribs, Tactics: Gut Shot Most Terrible Way To Die – Spreads Fecal Matter From Intestines & Stomach Acid From Stomach To All Parts Of The Body – Guarantees Infection, Philosophy: No Honor In Life/Death Fight – Fight To Win, Tactics: Goal Is To Survive, Machete: Four Count Weapons Angles, Machete: Defensive X, Machete: First, Second, Third, Fourth Angles, Machete: Return Cuts & Backhands, Machete: Angels Of Attack, Machete: Match Footwork With Angles Of Attack, Machete: Forehand Diagonal Slashes, Machete: Quadrants, Machete: Breath + Attacks + Footwork = Well Trained Fighter, Machete: Keeping The Flow, Machete: Looping The Blade
Image
"A mark of an open mind is being more committed to your curiosity than your conviction.
The goal of learning is not to shield old views against new facts, but to revise old views with new facts.
Ideas are possibilities to explore, not certainties to defend."


Garden Beach Syka The Protea Inn

"Listen to the wind, it talks. Listen to the silence, it speaks. Listen to your heart, it knows."
User avatar
Tazrae
Be savage, not average.
 
Posts: 1246
Words: 1808035
Joined roleplay: May 3rd, 2020, 2:02 pm
Location: Syka
Race: Human
Character sheet
Storyteller secrets
Journal
Plotnotes
Medals: 5
Mizahar Grader (1) Overlored (1)
One Thousand Posts! (1) One Million Words! (1)
Syka Seasonal Challenge (1)


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