(1866-10-13) New Tactics
New Tactics
Summary: Gabriel works on new tactics for the knights he will be training.
Date: 1866-10-13
Related: None
Gabriel  Alina  Corvin  Lucas  

Lonnaire - Couviere
See scene….

While she was still capable, Alina had made a point to continue her training with unarmed combat and even some with bladework. Her morning training complete, she strolls across the courtyard, moving somewhat stiffly as she had gotten a bit manhandled in her training. She is dressed in men's breeches and a shirt, better to fight in, though certainly not fashionable.

Gabriel is in another part of the courtyard, having let Alina go off and do whatever training Alina wanted to do. He has set up a small table to one side as well as several dummies that are spread out from one another. He stands at a central point, looking at each dummy in turn and then assumes a combat stance. With a quick motion, he moves forward, his sword coming up in an arc and cutting one dummys head off while his other hand comes up and points a pistol at another. Squeezing the trigger, the weapon fires… the ball grazing the head of another dummy as it smacks into the wall and richochets into the ground. "Damn." He mutters. He would have to practice keeping his aim a little more steady with that hand.

"Well that's an awful racket." Corvin notes of Gabriel's little display, walking alongside Alina, though not offering support, mostly because he knows she'd wave it off. "Suppose it's effective enough…when it hits. Saw the demonstrations in Venderos." He moves to lean against a patch of wall….well away from the firing line.

Alina stops to watch as well. "He's formidable with his blade," she comments. "Personally I think the handcannon is messy and noisy…" she smiles slightly, "but he has other thoughts regarding its usefulness in battle. And that makes me think Father chose well: he may be a knight but he is willing to think with more than just his sword."

She rolls her shoulders and leans against the wall by her brother. Shouls Gabriel wish to join, he could, of course. Or if he preferred to continue his practice, she would watch.

Gabriel doesn't quite see Corvin or Alina yet, he's focused on other things. Like going to his table and reloading his handcannon. He also puts his sword on the table and takes up a dagger, sheathing it in his belt and then palms something else as well. With a few gestures he has two servants reposition some of the dummies so that two of them are standing almost side by side, as if they are in a hallway. Nodding, he waits for the men to back away. He takes up position and then with a flick of his wrist, he sends a small object sailing towards the feet of the two dummies where it cracks and erupts into a cloud of dark smoke. Running forward, he triggers the handcannon again, simultaneously drawing his dagger and crashing into the other dummy and delivering a killing stroke across its neck.

"Hm." Corvin actually looks mildly impressed, "You're sure he's a knight? That looked considerably more like something we'd do." He glances to Alina and grins a bit, "I never had a problem with father's choice. Knight or not, he knows fighting isn't all about high ideals and inflexible traditions. When there's a man in your face, trying to end you…it's kill or be killed, and that's all there is to it."

Alina claps her hands and giggles with delight at Gabriel's use of smoke powder and a short blade.

…actually, from the flush in her cheeks, she might even be somewhat turned on by it.

Still, she glances to her brother with a grin. "I can honestly say I am pleased as well. And quite so." She bites her lower lip and turns her eyes back to Gabriel. "If the knights he brings in are even half as flexible in their considerations, I think they will be quite an assett." She pats her stomach idly. "And I feel less apprehensive about giving up one of my children to learn this art."

Letting the smoke powder clear, Gabriel steps back over to his table and begins reloading his handcannon. As he does so, the servants come back and set up a group of four dummies, all positioned in a way so it looks like several armed men are coming down a hallway. Gabriel nods in approval and then glances down at his table, thinking. He seems to consult with an older man who appears a little gaunt, gesturing at something. Finally nodding, he takes the item, and then steps back to face the grouping. Frowning, he flicks his hand out and a small vial flies towards the four dummies. It his the first one on the right in the shoulder and liquid splatters out from there. He steps over and inspects this, waving at the man over to discuss something with him.

"I can think of a few that might make for such knights." Corvin flicks a meaningful glance towards Alina, before looking back over towards where Gabriel is practicing. He tilts his head, frowning in thought and curiosity more so than confusion. "Now what's this all about, I wonder? Seems inefficient for a contact poison unless it's supremely concentrated."

Alina furrows her brow. "I hope it was just water and being used as practice. I don't like spending time in the alchemy lab to have it wasted." She considers. "Perhaps it was an acid? To weaken armor?"

Finally, she pushes against the wall and stands entirely upright, drifting towards her husband, the combat dummies, and the older man Gabriel is consulting with. "Incorporating the use of alchemicals into combat, darling?" she asks as she approaches, leaning up to kiss his cheek if he'll let her.

Gabriel grunts at Alina's question, his attention is still focused on some of the splatter patterns. "Do you think a larger vessel might have more of an effect?" He asks the old man who is giving Alina a bow even as he mumbles something about it being possible. Gabriel dismisses him and lets Alina kiss his cheek. "Yes, well, tis last test didn't go as I expected. You see here." He gestures towards the wet areas of the first two dummies. "Not enough of the water made it to the back row. This was supposed to represent acid. Nothing too small, but the kind where if it got onto your skin it might burn a bit and might even be worse if it splashed into your eyes."

"If you want that kind of slpatter, you're right, you'd need a larger vessel. Something like the smaller Everlight globes or the larger vessels that some alchemists use in their labs." Corvin offers as he too draws near. "If in a confined space, consider smashing it against the ceiling near their center and let it rain down on them, if your goal is to hit as many as possible. Plus the natural reflex of most at such disturbance…is to look up."

"Acid's tricky to throw," Lucas weighs in. The Wraith had been watching things quietly, nodding approvingly at Gabriel's Wraith like tactics. "And Corvin has the right of it, it's best in confined spaces, out in the open," he wobbles his hand. "It's chancy."

Alina considers. "Mild acid may be annoying but more trouble than its worth anyway." She cocks her head at Corvin. "I was taught to use sand — I keep my pouch with my flashvials full of it — if I wanted to get something in an opponent's eyes."

Gabriel gives Corvin a nod. "Things to consider, Corvin. Things to consider." He gives a little grin and then looks at Lucas and nods. "Well, some of this is conceptual. I am trying to piece together how I want l'Saigner knights to act and behave when in combat situations. I figure getting a grip on close-quarters combat within confined spaces might be a good place to start in terms of acting as defenders."

"Lucas is right as well. Acid is difficult and dangerous to work with, and particularly to carry safely." Corvin nods to Alina, "Sand is good, but you have to be quite close for it to be effective. But often any thrown object will give a foe a moment of pause. Only the most disciplined of fighters can focus past their natural reflexes to try to avoid even the most harmless of objects hurled towards their face. Hit the lead in a group of men charging down a hallway towards you, and you can buy another second or two." Which can make all the difference.

Corvin adds, "Might also want to consider thin grease upon the ground. Seeing all the people pursuing you skid into a collapsed tangle is both effective and highly amusing."

Lucas offers a rare chuckle, "It's true," he says of pursuers running into each other. "Caltrops are also effective, but more costly to prepare." He considers Gabriel's stated goals thoughtfully. "The misdirection you used with the hand cannon was a good start, and it's new technology so, it is already something that will keep most off balance. Also, it's best to go with the simplest solution. Especially at the start."

Alina looks pleased. She steals another brief kiss from her husband. "Close work practice might be wise as well. In your open fields you have more room to swing a sword or axe or mace. In a crowded hallway you may be limited to a dirk."

"There are a number of options, but I do like what the handcannon can offer. It's loud, it can pack quite a punch, and it allows for some devestation to be delivered at range, allowing for the possibility for other openings." Gabriel puts an arm around Alina, considering. "Though there might be other options worth looking into as well. So any and all suggestions are welcome."

"It's got its' good points. But the smoke can obscure your own vision as much as your foes'." Corvin notes, and shrugs, "But not altogether different from flash vials or smoke bombs in that regard. Rather kind of both in one with an added bonus of lethality. I can see the appeal."

"Also if your knights are intended as protectors, then hit or miss, if they fire their cannon they've raised the alarm," Lucas chimes in before nodding to his sister. "Yes, can't go wrong with knives and dirks," he agrees, nodding to the pair of daggers riding his hips.

Alina agrees, but allows the menfolk to do more of the talking. Less her area of expertise anyway.

"Yeah, I had the same thought, Lucas. A handcannon is a weapon, an alarm, and a distraction all at once. It's quite a tool, especially if the person wielding it makes that one shot count." He leans over and kisses Alina on the top of the head. "I'll have to get with the two of you sometime and hammer out a few more ideas. Until then, I think I should get Alina into a bath, I am sure she wants to get into something much nicer before dinner." He smiles at her and then nods at both Corvin and Lucas before leading Alina away.

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