Wednesday, 19 December 2007

Two Drake Rebels (c. 1615)

D. A sketch of two drake rebels (c. 1615). Given their stature and agility, durulz often fight in teams of two or three, with one warrior seeking to distract or fix an opponent, while a comrade manoeuvres to gain an advantage and deal a crippling or killing blow. This bears many similarities to the heroic Orlanthi styles of combat, with the Four Winds/Storms--though durulz are less averse to piling in all at once.

The figure on the left is a warrior of some repute in his society. Rather than wear a mollusc-helm, he possesses a bronze cap of Heortling style and manufacture, with a centaur-tail plume. A mail mantle covers his shoulders and upper torso, underlain with a thin layer of leather; the bag at his side simply holds his rations of grubs, mushrooms and herbs. The shield is of the distinctly leaf-shaped durulz pattern. This particular shield is of canvas-covered wood, though some are plated in bronze. It is tall (for a durulz) and angles away from a centre ridge. Notable is the presence of a sharp base-spike, used to either help secure a shield wall or pin an enemy's foot. The sword displays the thinking, manufacture and practice behind another school of durulz fighting. Straight and double-edged with a sharp point, it is manufactured from a single piece of bronze by accomplished redsmiths. Though it can be (and is) used in a manner similar to the single-edged falcata, striking at the legs, it is more often thrust up into man-sized creatures' groin areas--to incapacitate the target and render it vulnerable to a killing blow.

The figure on the right is a speardrake. He is of lesser position and background, and accompanies the warrior in battle. His armour follows the same pattern as his comrade's--protective headgear and a mantle across his upper body--but is made from leather. The drake carries a longish groin- or crotch-spear, with a wickedly serrated head. Weapons such as this are used to 'fix' an opponent in the groin or abdomen, to allow other warriors to hamstring the foe and then deliver a killing blow. Note the somewhat haphazard stuffing of reeds into the belt and mantle, forming a rudimentary element of disguise; a practice that would ultimately develop into the ghillie-style suits of later years.

(Originally posted on ImmoderateGloranthaQuest, 9 December 2007.)