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Springtide, VII 4626
Copyright © 2002-2017 by Dustin Jon Scott
[Last Update: Decemberrd, 2017]
§αI¶I. Kalodiyu, called Lodiyu, and Rakiriya, called Kiriya, gathered the paladins-in-training in a clearing in the woods outside Graelark. Among them were Kira’s eleven-year-old sister, Jazariya, called Zariya, and ten-year-old sister, Rokariya, called Kariya.
§αI¶II. Lodiyu’s father, Orikuyu, watched from a distance along with some of the other parents. Lodiyu himself had only become a paladin the previous year, and Kiriya, being thirteen years old, less than a month ago.
§αI¶III. Zariya readied to spar with Takuyu, a boy a year older than she, due for initiation the next year. Both had a wooden sword and wooden shield. The rule was best three out of five.
§αI¶IV. Takuyu towered over Zariya, even as they both crouched behind their shields.
§αI¶VI. Takuyu advanced, jabbing at Zariya with his sword from behind his shield.
§αI¶VII. Zariya dodged the strike, barely, but Takuyu followed it immediately by bashing her
§αI¶VIII. Zariya attempted to brace herself and put her weight against her own shield, but was easily knocked back by the larger and stronger boy.
§αI¶IX. Before Zariya had the chance to recover her senses, Takuyu ploughed into her with his shield again, and again, until finally and easily he bore her to the ground.
§αI¶X. Takuyu stood over her, shield down, pointing his wooded sword at her.
§αI¶XI. “That’s one” he said.
§αI¶XII. Zariya quickly got back up and brushed herself off.
§αI¶XIII. Takuyu advanced again upon her with his shield, but this time she as she braced for his shove she attempted to spin and send him hurdling past her, but he was familiar with the tactic and merely turned to face her, keeping his weight against her, and quickly bore her to the ground again, causing her to drop her sword once more.
§αI¶XIV. “That’s two” he said.
§αI¶XV. Zariya got up and brushed herself off again, quickly regaining her sword and shield.
§αI¶XVI. “You’re going to get hurt. Give up?” he said.
§αI¶XVII. “No way!” said Zariya, shaking her head slowly while keeping her eyes trained coldly and determinedly at his.
§αI¶XVIII. Takuyu advanced again, attempted to stab at her from behind his shield. This time, however, Zariya dropped her sword and shield while in one swift motion diving toward Takuyu’s right side, under the stab of his sword, threw an arm up and managed to grab him by the back of his shoulder and pull herself forward. Before Takuyu could react she brought her knee to her chest and kicked her leg backward into the back of his calf, followed immediately with an elbow to the back of his head.
§αI¶XIX. Takuyu fell hard to knees and as the elbow to the back of his head knocked him forward, while another swift kick, this time to his back, sent him face-planting into the ground as his sword and shield landed on the ground next to him.
§αI¶XX. Slowly Takuyu managed to get his hands and knees under him.
§αI¶XXI. “That’s one,” said Zariya, pointing a wooden sword at Takuyu’s neck.
§αI¶XXII. “That’s not fair!” said Takuyu as he clambered back to his feet, shaking his head. “We’re supposed to be learning how to fight with weapons! You can’t drop your weapons and fight unarmed!”
§αI¶XXIII. Zariya put her hands on her knees, grinning at Takuyu. “Ready to go again?” she asked him.
§αI¶XXIV. “Pick up your sword and shield,” said Takuyu.
§αI¶XXV. “No, I feel like I fight better without them,” said Zariya.
§αI¶XXVI. Takuyu looked to his father, watching from the distance. His father merely shrugged.
§αI¶XXVII. Takuyu advanced at Zariya again, striking from behind his shield, but this time his movement was more sloppy, and Zariya swiftly fake right while twisting to face left, and with her right arm managed to grab his sword wrist and jerk him forward while she darted down and uppercutted his elbow in two quick blows, briefly hyperextending it as Takuyu howled in pain.
§αI¶XXVIII. Zariya then kicked Takuyu in the knee, causing Takuyu to cry out again as she briefly hyperextended his leg. He fell to his knees.
§αI¶XXIX. Zariya then picked up a wooden sword, pushed Takuyu over on his back with her foot, and stood over him, pointing the sword at his throat.
§αI¶XXX. “That’s two,” said Zariya, smirking at her fallen adversary as she handed him the wooden sword.
§αI¶XXXI. Takuyu took the sword and struggled back to his feet, brushing himself off again.
§αI¶XXXII. The two faced each other; Takuyu behind his shield, sword ready, and Zariya staring determinedly at him, as locked on his.
§αI¶XXXIII. This time, Takuyu did not advance, but remained in place behind his shield.
§αI¶XXXIV. Zariya stood before Takuyu, hands on her knees. “Aren’t you going to advance?” asked Zariya, to which Takuyu shook his head.
§αI¶XXXV. “Come on!” shouted Takuyu’s father, “she’s an unarmed girl! Just finish this!”
§αI¶XXXVI. “Daddy’s mocking you,” said Zariya, beginning to circle Takuyu as he kept his face to her, watching her from behind his shield, ready to strike.
§αI¶XXXVII. Still Takuyu said nothing, but merely kept his eyes on Zariya as she circled him, studying him for weaknesses.
§αI¶XXXVIII. “Stop cowering behind your shield, boy!’ Takuyu’s father shouted.
§αI¶XXXIX. Takuyu roared angrily and charged at Zariya, holding his shield out before him, and his sword readied behind the shield. Zariya jumped back but he kept coming. She danced out of his reach easily, laughing at him as he continued charging angrily and awkwardly toward her, his shield held out as like by a child who’d never even fought.
§αI¶XL. Takuyu ran faster and faster at Zariya, screaming angrily as she kept running in circles around him. Then suddenly Takuyu tripped on a rock and flew forward, and fell with all his weight upon the hilt of his wooden sword as it struck the shield as it hit the ground just before Takuyu would have. And the fight was suddenly over.
§αI¶XLI. “No!” Takuyu’s father shouted as he and several others ran forward.
§αI¶XLII. “Zariya, what have you done?!” screamed Rowan as he ran toward his daughter.
§αI¶XLIII. Zariya walked up to Takuyu, whose torso seemed to float above the wooden shield on the ground beneath him, turned him over, and found the wooden sword buried deep in his chest as blood spurted from his gasping mouth.
§αI¶XLIV. Zariya screamed.