The peace that formerly reigned in Terra Nova has eroded, now little more than a memory. War ravages the continent. Disputes divide kingdoms; ideals divide families. The quest for power consumes absolutely and indiscriminately. None are immune to its allure.
Who will rise and who will fall? Only time—and ambition—will tell.
New gifted family of Lorendale added to the Families of Importance, the Decarlos!
At the beginning of February 2022 the site will experience a 5 year time jump! The IC year will jump from 822 to 827! This gives us about 8 months to prepare our characters for that jump. We plan to host very intentional planning sessions to help everyone get their plots and characters ready for this! As of this moment, one thing you should all start considering is making sure the threads your characters are in are furthering your character's stories.
Etta didn't want to hold Arlo too strictly to his promise when he was so busy taking care of his own caravan. Maybe he was only being nice and saying what she wanted to hear, anyway, when he'd told her he'd help her learn to fight better...maybe the big brother instinct would make him pivot to deciding she should hide herself away with the children when the time came to put up a fight, again.
It was easy to admire Tempest, for so many reasons--Tempest was plenty of things Etta felt she was not...boldly courageous, fierce, beautiful, strong...and Etta knew she was nice, and not at all standoffish, though she was naturally protective of her people in her caravan, and her family. The twins were sweet, bright children--both of them a credit to their parents, in Etta's opinion. She could see why Stone cared for her, and she couldn't muster a shred of vicious envy over the fact...it just lent an air of wistfulness to her admiration for the woman.
It wasn't that Etta was necessarily shy, but she dreaded imposing on other people, especially during difficult times...but when she saw Tempest practicing with her weapons, her dyr making slow circles in the air high above them, she thought she might as well take the chance and ask, at least.
Approaching slowly, she watched for a little while at first, her healer's kit slung from one shoulder, both her hands curled around the long strap, before she finally spoke.
"Excuse me, but...could...would it be alright if you showed me some basic combat maneuvers? If you have time, of course," she said.
Tempest was seeing to her caravan, there were a slew of injuries and scared elderly- something she didn't often see. Alva was flying over head, just keeping an eye on things and ushering little children back. That made her smile a little at her dyr, he was compassionate and kind to others even if he was a big tough bird. He fought so hard and she loved him dearly for that.
Now, it wasn't to say that she knew everyone but she did know almost all of Arlo's kids and siblings so she wouldn't be too surprised when one of them approached her during a free moment where she was pulling a thick needle through leather armor with a pare of pliers. Alva gave her a heads up that someone was approaching her and she would thank him as she looked up to see the brunette walking over to her.
Slowly she stood up, the driver was just in a pair of leather pants and a halter top, her long curly hair tied in a french braid down her back to stay out of her face. There were still bandages on her arm and side from the first attack but she showed no signs that they bothered her at all, "I have plenty of time, I was just fixing my armor...assholes tore holes through it so had to repair the damage," she said with an annoyance in her tone. Looking up at her with her mismatched eyes as she then gave a relaxed smile and looked to Alva. "Mind getting the sparring staves?" she asked him and with a nod he flew off just around the caravan and a few moments later returned with two long staves that he would drop next to Tempest.
"Thanks. So how much fighting do you know?" she asked her curiously, bending down to pick them up and then place her leather armor onto a barrel that was close by. She would approach the woman who seemed rather nervous and shy around her so Tempest did her best to just be relaxed- she couldn't recall ever being shy honestly.
"Better you patching up your armour than me patching up you," said Etta, venturing to smile a little. She'd gladly see every piece of armour in Dresmond ruined if it meant some body had been spared the brunt of the attack.
She carefully set aside her kit and brushed her suddenly-damp palms against her thighs. Like Tempest, she wore soft deerskin trousers, but paired them with sturdy half-boots and a loose, short tunic in undyed linen that could easily be washed at the end of the day if it got blood or vomit or any other bodily substances on it.
"Not much, I'll admit," she said of her fighting skills. "Arlo's tried to teach me over the years, but I could never really bring myself to put much force behind my hits. He usually just ends up handing me a shield and trying to get me to keep my grip on it at all costs."
Etta screwed up her mouth into a rueful expression.
"...but we'll be needing more than that, I think, in the future. I'd rather be able to do more, now. I guess I never thought I'd ever really face an actual enemy." She let out a light laugh, but the sound was bitter. "Naive."
Tempest smiled at that, "You probably patch up better than I do- then again I refused stitches so I don't know what that says about me," she said with a slight chuckle at that one. She didn't want to have the medical supplies used on her until she really needed it and the other people were wholly tended to.
She was sporting a pair of gloves over her hands now though to hide the bruising from when she battered her fists against the wall. She didn't want anyone to see how she vented out her rage- though Danior saw it and didn't judge her, instead he comforted her and helped her through it.
And now she was flinching some as she held the staff out to her, "Oh dear. Well, a shield is a great defense but Coheed men had a whack strength to them that can splinter a shield in just a few hits, you really need to know how to attack someone and defend yourself against anyone or anything thing," she told her gently but it was the honest truth. She fought Coheed enough times to know this.
Tempest would then step over and hand her a staff, "You're not naïve, you are just combat inexperienced and there is nothing wrong with that so kick that out of your head right now or you won't be able to hit anything." she told her. It was a gentle but firm nudge on that one as she would pat her arm and then point forward for her to walk with her.
"We will use these for today then, goal, knock me off of my feet- think you can manage that?" she asked her curiously. Tempest lead her out far enough to give them space, Alva flying and then landing on a barrel nearby to watch her, "I'll show you how but first hold onto the staff and take a stance. You need to be firm on the ground and sure in your footing or you'll fall on your ass," she told her. Tempest took training a bit seriously, even if her nature seemed laid back at the moment.
Etta readily took the staff in both hands—even a light training tool felt heavy to her untrained arms and she felt momentarily ashamed...but it would take practice, she knew, and she could and would build up some muscle.
“See, that’s easily said, but it goes against my every instinct to want to topple somebody I actually like, and who I know is already a bit injured,” she explained, still unsure how she was going to get over that mental block. “Would be nice if we had some Coheed captive to practice on, but I guess he’d have been beaten to a lifeless pulp several times over by now.”
But that was the difference, maybe, this time. She felt it in her gut, strange and potent—rage. Hatred. Vengeance.
And knowing how weak she was, and lacking in skill, she supposed she’d have to be exceedingly lucky (in a very bad way,) to land any kind of debilitating blow on Tempest with a practice stave.
Etta settled her feet at her shoulder’s width, keeping her knees loose as Arlo had taught her. Even when holding a shield, it was best to stay standing, so she was comparatively okay at that part.
Tempest showed no irritation over her not knowing how to fight really, everyone started from somewhere and it was better late than never honestly. Hats off to Arlo for trying to teach her though, she hoped that she could aid Etta in getting better now.
"Well think of this. Don't think of me as someone like that. Think of me as a Coheed warrior coming in to kill your family. To hurt every innocent child and enslave all the women," she told her simply. It was how she trained, imagining those bastards on the post that she was beating. That made her chuckle a little, "No I would have questioned them and then shown mercy by a quick death. We aren't them and they will learn that. If they stopped fighting for half a minute they'd see they could be much better," she said with a shake of her head. Tempest would do everything she could to show Coheed that their way of life, how they treat others is wrong and that there really were better things to do that just kill your neighbors.
Looking over her stance, she would give a nod, and then she would come up to her, "Sorry," she told her in advance as she gave her a hard shove against her shoulders with her staff length wise. She was testing her balance and seeing how well she could keep her footing and not fall from a hard shove.
“You’re right,” said Etta. “I really don’t think I actually have the stomach for needless cruelty.” If a Coheed warrior were due to die, they wouldn’t have much chance to learn anything or change their ways, anyhow. Pure torture wouldn’t satisfy her, or bring back what had been lost.
Weirdly, Etta found she wasn’t entirely unused to being shoved at short notice. Especially in recent days, treating injuries without as much access to painkillers as she or her patients would have liked...it was instinct in some to lash out when she had to apply a disinfectant to an open wound, or set a broken bone, or, worst of all, amputate a mangled limb. In most cases she had help to hold people still, but there were always surprises. She did bend, and she did stumble, but she did not fall, and quickly turned back to face Tempest, to see where she was, where she seemed to be going.
If nothing else, a good dodge might save herself, at least.
She held the staff out in front of her, not at all sure what to actually do with it...swing and hit, in theory, but...was she supposed to wait for permission, when practicing, or...?
"That's what sets us apart from them honestly, we are different and we're not cruel," she told her with a bit of a smile at that. She knew no matter how much she hated Coheed, she couldn't get in on their abuse of other people and countries.
Tempest nodded at that, she moved but didn't fall on her ass and she was ok, "Good, you have a good footing, remember it and keep it." she told her as she would take a step back and then take her own stance with her hands spread across the staff and then pointed the tip at her, "Now, I am going to attack and your goal is to defend yourself against every blow, don't fall and if you see a chance to attack- attack," she told her rather simply. She was not worried about getting hurt by her, she had a feeling it honestly wouldn't hurt that much but she wouldn't say that out loud. Alva though would snicker at her and she shot him a side glare to hush it.
With out any more warning, her hand slid down and she gave a fast strike to her side with the staff all while staying in place.
Etta flinched away from the movement, but it was swift, and she scarcely managed to deflect the blow rather clumsily with the barest edge of her own staff, causing it to slide astray rather than truly whacking it away. She took a step back, feeling she could at least get out of range while she was figuring out how she was supposed to land a retaliatory hit. She slid her hands a little further apart on the staff, finding it more stable, and easier to control.
It's not a shield, Sage reminded her 'helpfully' from the sidelines.
Feeling it was now or never to make a serious start, Etta steeled herself, darted forward again, and tried flicking out the bottom of the staff, not quite sure where she was aiming or if she even should, but thinking she had to try to get it at least close to her opponent, and ending up slashing it through the air next to Tempest's hip.
Tempest watched reaction, a little frown on her face as it wasn't that confident. She kept at her one spot on the ground, her mismatching eyes staring towards Etta now as she regained herself. Tempest believed in her, knew that she could get it but sadly Tempest did not go easy on anyone but children so the woman was out of luck for the easy teacher that she normally was with others.
Watch yourself Alva... Hehe
It took a lot to not roll her eyes at him as she finally darted forwards and towards her, her hands moving to block the strike with her staff and then in the next instances use it to swing and catch her by the ankles to tangle and trip her down to the ground if she didn't move fast enough out of the way.
Etta was so focused on protecting what was in front of her, what she could see, that the back of her ankles hardly occurred to her as a weak spot, but the twirl of the staff caught her neatly just above the heel and her feet skidded out from under her, leaving her to flail backwards in an expansive arc, letting out a shriek of "WHOOP!" before she landed entirely on her ass with both hands slapping the dirt and her own staff tumbling out of her grip.
She sat there for a moment, jarred enough to blink heavily to get her bearings, her bottom immediately numb in a way that told her it would be a bunch of nifty different colours, later, and had to laugh at herself. Maybe it wasn't appropriate, and she was taking it all seriously, but she hadn't laughed in what felt like years and the realization of just how impressively stupid she must've looked made it burst out of her. A shocked giggle became a chuckle, that grew to a guffaw, and in a moment there were tears in her eyes as she shook her head.
"Al--alright," she gasped, still cackling with the kind of emotional release that bordered on hysteria. "That's got to be, what, at least five points to you?" she said, grinning up at Tempest.
Last Edit: Nov 19, 2020 17:23:02 GMT -5 by Deleted
Tempest knew that she was able to take her down to the ground relatively easily but she did not expect it to be that easy as she would then be flopping down to the ground like a newborn foal as she landed right on the ground. A small smile was on Tempest's face as she leaned against the staff in her hands as she looked at her pupal for a moment before the woman started to bust out laughing and damn it all if it wasn't contagious.
The driver just started to laugh, a smile on her face as she shook her head at her down there on the ground, "Squarely at least, you ok?" she asked her, her tone light-hearted as she would move over and hold her hand out for her to take to help heft her right back up on her feet. Maybe the knock on the ass was what she needed to be able to get better or it was jarring out all the unpleasant emotions from the past days.
"That was a pretty good fall, I don't think i've ever watched someone eat dirt like that in a while," she told her though, laughing a bit and smiling at her, "Best to shake it off and then try again, you'll get the hang of it- need a minute?" she would ask. Tempest may be a hard trainer but she wasn't an ass about it. Her gaze would drift to both their dyrs now, Alva had his face tucked right under his wing but she knew that the bird was laughing his feathery ass off because she could hear it.
"Fine, I'm fine!" insisted Etta, though she took the offer of a hand to help haul herself back onto her feet. She'd be sore later, she knew, but there was always arnica and maybe Tove could help her out with a bucket of snow to sit in if it got really bad. Sage was twitching her tail, feeling how very unfair it was that she should have to feel an echo of that same hit when it was all Etta's own doing. "Arlo always did say if there was more than one way to do something, I'd find the hard way even if the easier way was right under my nose."
She brushed off her behind but figured she was well past coming out of this with clean clothes, and picked up her staff, shaking off what she could of the tumble. She hunched her shoulders and rolled her head from side to side to make sure everything mostly still worked the way it had before.
"Right, so I was wrong to forget about my feet just because I happened to be standing still for the moment, I guess?"
Tempest was still laughing some as she helped hoist her right back up on her feet from that lovely tumble on down to earth. She would just look her over for a moment and mentally assess that she was ok and then seeing the little twitch from her dyr made her give an apologetic sorry look to them because they were going to be feeling all of Tempests training today- she only hoped that didn't mean they'd hate her for it, "Well it's apart of learning. Stone actually helped me get better using the staff, he tripped me up so many times before I got it right on him and sent him to the ground," she said with a little chuckle.
"You weren't paying attention to the other end, you need to use your peripheral version as well to see what the other end is doing. In a few heartbeats of a motion, I could hit your arm and then on the push back take your feet out again. It's anticipated what your opponent might do; will I attack your feet? Your chest? Your hip? Just trying to be prepared for what could possibly happen is a good start to things," she told her with a little smile at that.
"Alright, if your ready, take your stance again but this time you attack me, don't hold back you won't hurt me," she told her, confident in her words at this as she would place her feet and staff back into the resting hold position she had before. Tempest wanted her to relax and get confident with this, so now it was time for her to give a whack at knocking Tempest off balance.
Etta’s smile stayed in place as Tempest spoke, and the exertion of the practice was reason enough for the flush on her cheeks at the mention of Stone. She knew he was a capable fighter in close quarters, and it seemed he and Tempest were well-matched in that regard, as well as others.
She looked down at the staff, chewing on her lower lip as she nodded, listening. A staff was a straight line...so whatever one end was doing, the other would be in equal opposition to it. As long as she was aware of one side, she should be able to pretty accurately guess at the position of the other.
Supposing that everything could depend on the feet, and, by extension, the legs, Etta gathered up all her resolve, tried a feint with one end of her staff in a movement towards Tempest’s right shoulder before she struck out with the lower end at her left knee, resisting the urge to glance down to check if it was going to hit, fearing the precipitate look would give away her intention.
Last Edit: Nov 19, 2020 18:42:44 GMT -5 by Deleted