Solo A Taut Bow II

Moritz spends some time training a new weapon...

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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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A Taut Bow II

Postby Moritz Craven on June 19th, 2022, 8:48 pm

2 Summer 522


It was a dream. And yet, was it a dream? The morning before Moritz had woken after dreaming of standing on a roof and shooting a passing person in a carriage with a bow... He had not thought much on it, but had ended up going to the Outpost and buying a bow. It had just felt... Right.

Now this morning he was woken from another dream. A different but similar dream. It also involved a bow, but rather than standing atop a building he was in a wooded area... There was a wall... A fence? And a guard standing there doing what appeared to be rounds. Knocking his arrow, the bow so much like the new one he had bought, he prepared for a perfect moment... Then he stilled and held his breath... Before releasing it. Silently the arrow thwipped through the air only to hit the man in the back just below his neck. Clearly he had been aiming for his head and had hit a bit low, but it still seemed just as decisive as the man fell forward to the ground in a heap.

Moving up Moritz stood over the man, seeing him squirm on the ground. With one booted foot he shoved the man over on his side, revealing the arrow having punched clean through and projecting out of his chest having clearly avoided any bones. Silently he knelt down and drew a dagger, and wordlessly slid it across the mans throat in a single smooth motion...

As the gurgle and spray echoed in his mind Moritz woke, trying to shake the images from him. Like the time before he had started far away, but had ended up close and personal It almost felt.. Passionless, like he was cutting a herb from a cluster on the ground as he cut the mans throat. But no, it was just a dream, just a dream... Right? It was just a dream. Surely it was just a dream. What else could it be?

Shaking himself awake fully Moritz got out of bed and peered over at the new supplies he had purchased. The bow. Arrows. A quiver. Not having anything better to do and knowing he would not fall back asleep now Moritz slid the quiver onto his back, picked up the bow case and the arm guard, and headed outside. Not really having a better place to practice Moritz simply picked a spot that seemed safe. Far enough from his house so he wouldn't hit it by mistake. With ample targets, or trees, within range. He would start small and try to hit from a short range, and work his way up from there. If he could hit a full sized tree from a fair number of paces away by the end he would be satisfied.

First things first Moritz took out the bow from the case and began by stringing it. As before it was a decent workout for his arms, taking a bit of strength to even get that far. The first end was simple, simply looping the end of the string around its spot on the bow. Then he had to stretch it across to the other end and try to fit it in place. This required a fair bit of tugging and pulling and working and jerking things about. The bow, the string, both moved and pitched and finally he fitted it into place with one last grunt and an abundance of labor.

Now what? Setting his bow aside in the open case Moritz picked up the armguard, he assumed meant to stop the string from hitting his other arm. For the hand doing the firing the fingers... Ah, the fingers? Having forgotten about that Moritz ran inside and came back out with a pair of red gloves he slotted over his digits. Feeling relatively ready he began. Quiver on his back with arrows. Armguard protecting his arm... And gloves protecting his fingers from the pull of the string. With that Moritz pulled a single arrow from the quiver, fitted it in place, and began to pull the string back.

That was about when things went wrong. He was unsure if he pulled wrong, or simply not hard enough, but suddenly he felt the string slip from his grip and the arrow was flung away a few feet. But rather than in the intended direction it sort of flopped sideways from Moritz.

With a sigh Moritz went to retrieve the arrow, thinking on how to improve for his next attempt. Perhaps rather than hitting a target as his goal, he should first have a goal of properly firing an arrow....

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A Taut Bow II

Postby Moritz Craven on June 19th, 2022, 10:16 pm

Moving back to his original position, Moritz let out a breath and fitted the arrow back to the bow. This time however he did not begin pulling it right away. This time he considered more fully what he was going to do. Oddly enough, he thought back to his dream earlier, trying to pick out details... He could not recall anything special about pulling the bow, so perhaps he was just bad at that or doing it wrong. Breathing! He had measured his breathing, and held his breath while shooting.

Of course, Moritz reminded himself, he never actually got to the point of shooting the bow and had failed before then. So... Better grip? More careful pull? The weight of the string, the force needed to pull it, was surprising. Placing the arrow back in his quiver Moritz decided on that. Before he used an arrow, he was going to familiarize himself with the bow and string itself. If he could pull it well without arrow, perhaps he could do so as well with it. Plus it meant each time he failed he did not have to waste time fetching an arrow.

With a sigh Moritz began his first attempt, simply pulling the string back. As he did he felt it move, the tip going in a new direction... The right one. However the more he pulled, the more weight and force and strength he needed to move it more. And then more, and more, until he felt the full weight of the bow bearing down on him. He definitely needed to work his arm muscles with a bow this solid...

Then as if imagining he was holding an invisible arrow Moritz... Held his breath. Sighted along the bow... And released. It was then he saw the use of the arm guard, as the string snapped and hit that area. Definitely a problem over time if not careful, and so better off with a glove. Or... Thinking on it, Moritz recalled his gauntlet. Could it perhaps serve a similar purpose? He had it on his off hand... Which was the one holding the bow, while his on hand pulled and aimed the arrow and released the string. Yes, he supposed, that could work since it was protective. Though for now he was fine with using the arm guard.

Pulling the string back again he grunted and held it in place, counting to three before releasing and seeing the string pelt his arm as it flung itself away after snapping.

Somewhat satisfied Moritz once more pulled out an arrow, and fitted it to the bow. Then he slotted it into the perfect place, and began to pull back on the string while holding the string and arrow... He pulled, and pulled, and pulled on the string as best he could. Then ready to fire he held his breath, sighted down the bow just right... And released. As he did the arrow soared through the air... And hit the ground. Looking back on it, it was fairer to say the arrow wobbled rather than soared. And it had only gone a few feet from him before hitting the mulchy ground. He could have thrown the arrow farther and with more forth. Still he could not help a small bit of satisfaction at it. At least the arrow had gone in the correct direction this time. Clearly an improvement!

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A Taut Bow II

Postby Moritz Craven on June 19th, 2022, 11:21 pm

Walking over again to fetch his arrow, which only took a few small steps, Moritz went back to his earlier spot and turned once more to face the tree. He was not that far from his target, maybe twenty or so feet away.. And yet he was no where near hitting it. Still, he knew every new weapon was a process, and he would get better over time and with practice. Just like with throwing daggers. He had to learn what worked, what did not, and keep trying to improve until he worked it out.

There were probably some people who knew how to use bows around Syka, but honestly he was so bad with any new weapon when he first began using it he wanted to work through some of the basics before asking for help. It was not from a sense of embarrassment, but from a desire to avoid annoying anyone with how bad he was at it. He had a knack for repetition, and once he got something down he had it down well, but hitting that level of basic understanding for him was always tricky.

He recalled his first time cooking, how basic his mistakes had been, and compared it to now. Now with some direction he could make an actual meal people would want to eat, something he could not say before. It had taken him a long time to get there however, and a lot of mistakes and trial and error. He only hoped he was a faster study with a new weapon than he was cooking.

Focusing again Moritz fitted the arrow into place, working again on how he held the arrow. Holding both the arrow and drawing the string at once with a single hand was tricky, for once making Moritz wish he had an extra hand for such things. One to hold the arrow. One to hold and pull the string. And one to hold the bow. Such would surely be simpler. Not that he would give up from that alone, but still it was a wishful thought... The arrow in place Moritz paused, adjusted his hold a bit, and then began to pull the arrow back. Though it was a small change he felt perhaps this was part of the problem which he hoped he had either fixed or improved. He pulled, and pulled a bit more, and then kept pulling, feeling the strain once more in his arms as he worked the muscles. Then he paused and held his breath, made some final aiming adjustments, and released.

This time the arrow launched off, his first proper firing. Admittedly it only went about ten or so feet, and somehow ended up landing about four feet to the left of where it would be straight, but still an improvement!

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Moritz Craven
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A Taut Bow II

Postby Moritz Craven on June 19th, 2022, 11:54 pm

Trotting along Moritz once more fetched the arrow, checking the spot where it landed. He seemed to have at least fired it straight, however clearly his aim had been off and while straight it was in the wrong direction. He would need to work on his aim, as the farther away he managed to fire the worse a small correction or alteration would result in being off the mark.

He was a bit concerned he would end up breaking an arrow, but not actually having hit anything yet besides some soft mulchy ground there was no real danger of that. If he did actually manage to hit anything properly he would have to watch out for that and be careful in removing it. And he supposed over time, even with careful use, arrows would need replacing and would break or wear out which was sort of a given. The same with any weapon used a lot, it would need repairs and refurbishment.

As always when training for consistencies sake he tried to move back to the same spot before each try, that way he would be measuring against the same thing and he hoped would have a better idea of if he was improving or not. Or at least that was his train of logic he was following.

Letting out another sigh Moritz settled into place. This time he tried to consider other things on what might be affecting his aim or attempts. His stance? In combat stances could affect things, perhaps that also applied to using a bow? It made a sort of sense. Holding himself sideways a bit he moved so the bow was pointing in the direction and his arms were positioned better in line. He also widened his stance a bit to give him a more stable base to shoot from...

With that done he next set his arrow in place and flexed his body to make sure he was limber. As he did another thought occurred to him. Could he use a bow while moving? Not now, clearly he needed to work on the basics, but perhaps he could use one as well when moving about once he got better?

Holding the arrow and string in one hand he began to pull, focusing on his arms muscles and on pulling straight. And he pulled some more... And a bit more... Keeping his arm straight, focusing on how it was bent and moved... Which way the arrow and bow pointed... The sensation of his arm holding back the string which wanted to pull forward... He held his breath, sighted one last time... Measured. Considered... And then finally he released.

As he did the arrow moved through the air. This time it seemed to actually pick up a bit of speed, and while landing a foot to the right from straight it went at least fifteen feet. A marked improvement from before.

With a smile Moritz let out his breath and moved to pick up his arrow, a bit of a smile on his face.

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Moritz Craven
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