Wednesday was a long day. Got up at 4:30AM, worked 6-3, fenced 7:30-9:30.
“But you don’t fence on Wednesdays,” claims my imaginary internet stalker.
“Oh contraire imaginary internet stalker, I traveled to North Philadelphia for the Barony of Bhakail practice!” I say signing the imaginary internet restraining order.
Long day short, after work I made the trip to Bhakail’s practice and it was pretty awesome. Not to knock my Hartshorn-Dale friends, but I think I’ll learn more at Bhakail, with at least four dons in regular attendance and the varying styles their students have learned. Don Ian and Don Griffith were also able to quickly and accurately analyze my…method? of fencing. For one, my tendency to drop to my knees mid-bout and continue back into a standing position without stopping. Another is that I’m a reactive, aggressive fighter. A combo that doesn’t often go together.
Girffith pointed out, as I’ve been told in less detail before, that I’m not good with the first reaction, I jerk too much, but once I start moving I don’t typically stop until someone is “dead” or out of range. Even something so small as a feint at my hand can trigger this. Whether this is good or bad for me, I’m not entirely certain. Once I’m into a fight, I can flow very well until a blow is landed, it’s just the initial movement that throws me off. Griffith said this “flow” makes sense when I told him of my Taekwon do experience, which I find odd ‘cause I’m not that good at sparing. I was also more or less complimented on my ability to fight in a non-linear fashion.
Anywho, I had mentioned my Aethlemaerc roots, and they said I was definitely an Aethlemaercian because I was in my full get-up just for practice. I’ll blame Don Christian for this need to dress up whether it’s practice or Queen’s Rapier Championship.
Either way, as long as I can afford the gas, and the car can afford the miles, I hope to make this a regular event.
Other things I found interesting was the East’s attitude towards O.G.R.’s (Order of the Golden Rapier, which is equivalent to White Scarf). Girffith told me how he was also surprised at the other kingdom’s respect for dons, to the point where he was having a conversation with someone, another friend mentioned that Girffith was a don, and their entire demeanor towards him changed. Being from Aethlemaerc, this simply makes sense to me. Dons, or White Scarves as they’re known in most of the world, are the pinnacle of rapier combat, and usually just awesome people as well. I don’t just respect them because of their skill, but because of what I can potentially learn from them. I try to take to heart lessons from White Scarves I don’t even like that much. Griffith also told me about how there is still a lot of bitterness in the East about the breaking of the White Scarf treaty, which happened only a few months after the treaty came into effect.
I’m thinking if I’m here long enough, I may have to turn the East Kingdom on its head. That’s a looooooooong way down the road. I’m also debating attending the Royals’ Rapier Championship, without removing the Escarbuncle from the drape on my mask…hmmmm