One of the most popular pastimes in Ammingrad these days is Dueling Clubs. On any street corner, from the dirtiest corner of Slog Alley to the pristine cross street of Sherry Lane you will find Dueling Clubs in their Salons, teaching martial arts to any who can pay the dues to learn. No two clubs are alike and each has its own form of fighting in any of the martial arts, from fencing to fisticuffs, to shooting, to magical combat and defense and even ancient fey open hand boxing. If you want to learn it, you can find it somewhere in Ammingrad. Each Club is run by a Master Teacher and some of the more prestigious ones have over 1500 members.
It is also not uncommon to find schools take up arms against each other to prove which art form is better than the other in an official way. Twice a year preliminary tournaments are held around the city. The best of those tournaments are then invited to the yearly Grand Prix. Only the best Clubs are permitted to enter and only the best students are allowed to compete in not only fighting but feats of strength, accuracy, and cunnings. The Grand Prix lasts a span and the best school is awarded the coveted, Crystal Cup.
On occasion you will find local disputes between Clubs to become personal and Club Wars are known to happen. But such practice is illegal and the wiser Clubs will settle their personal differences in Prize Fights hosted by local Noble Houses or even the local Warden Law House than to take to the streets.
Examples of Dueling Clubs:
The Chundahli School of Staves
(Naiadi Staff and Unarmed)
Master: Rath Chundahli
Platform: The Pond
The Hardhand Way
Master: Lord Stalward Fenworth
Platform: The Iron Grove
The Mykald Technique of Janni Wind Boxing
Master: Evin Mykald
Platform: The Spire Hall
The Genteel Art of Ignition
(Ifriti Fire Combat Magic and Unarmed)
Master: Lord Gaathry Sullin
Platform: 3rd Street Firewalk
The Flickering Flame
(Ifriti Unarmed and Philosophy)
Master: Lord Mephanis Ardeo
Platform: The Lantern House
(Tobble Kip – Gobbin Unarmed and Knife)
Master: Ewarg Lizb
Platform: Warehouse 5
The Chubie School of Brownie Defense
(Munch Mark – Brownie Iron Ket and Cooking)
Master: Chubie Maddron
Platform: Chubie Restaurant and Fight House
Edwyn Cobb’s School of Defensive Magic
(Fairy Combat Magic w/Strikes)
Master: Edwyn Cobb
Platform: The Corner Street yard
The Troumire Naiadi School of Blades
(Naiadi Knife and Unarmed / Pressure Blade)
Master: Immel Troumire
Platform: Troumire Manor
The Pell Mells
(Rod Strike Combat)
Master: Ezrellda Paige (Fairy)
Platform: The Lot
(“One Shot” technique – General Magic Combat)
Master: Jaimie Amado (Ifriti)
Platform: The Pocket Dimension
A Word on WEAPONRY:
This era in Warda’s history is an elegant age and the weapons reflect this. Blades are the weapons of choice among many and it is not uncommon to find fey with a small knife or a forearm length square shortblade at the small of their back. The more martial fey of the city are partial to the single handed curvedblade or sabre and curvedblade dueling is incredibly popular. The thinblade is also popular and is often paired with the dueling spike or shortblade.
Other blades, the strongblade, the longblade, and double handed curvedblade are all fashionable and there are many schools specializing in their use.
The other popular and perhaps more common weapon than blades is called a Strike. A Strike of wood or stone or metal is found on nearly every Warden, Guardian, Security Force and Militia in the city. A Strike’s primary function is that of a blunt instrument of combat but they are more often used as ranged weapons. Each Strike is imbued with a magical energy (sometimes elemental, sometimes merely destructive energy of no classification) that can be fired from it at an opponent. A magical adept individual can fire as many times as their body will allow, while a non-magical person can only use a strike as a blunt object.
Strikes come in three forms:
A Crop Strike: A Crop Strike is over 1.5 feet but never over 2.5. and is often found in twos. Crops are light, quick and good for close range bashing or close to medium range firing. They can be used in conjunction with a second Crop to deal rapid damage. Crops are notorious for draining their users quickly or for running out of charges. They are also not known for their range and are used as an upclose weapon. They are favored by Wardens.
A Rod Strike: The versatile Rod Strike usually is 3 to 4 feet in Strike and is often used as a cane. They can be used as a Dueling rod against other rods or as a solid bludgeoning weapon. They are good at medium range for shooting. They are extremely popular and many a dueling club has grown up around its use as an offensive and defensive weapon. Rods are known for their middle of the road utility. They have good range, good stopping power, and good capabilities but do not excel in any of these realms. Most Freelancers, Blood Dogs, some Wardens and all other martial practitioners will be proficient in a Rod Strike
A Staff Strike: The Staff Strike is the longest of the Strikes and comes in at 5 to 6 feet. They are known for immense power and range as well as double-ended versatility in close combat. They also come in a bladed variety that many Guardians have taken to. Bladed Strikes other than those on the wall are illegal in the city proper but the Staff Strike usually will have one. A Staff Strike has been known to bring down a person at 400 paces and accurate within inches. However, they usually have a maximum of 4 shots before they overload or seriously harm their user.
There are currently no such thing as “Firearms” or “Guns” in Warda. A Strike does as much damage and the need for such a device has never been seen.
Most fey would rather use a strike but the ancient art of archery has made a fashionable resurgence among high-class fey, particularly Janni. The crossbow mechanism is a human construction and some humans still use it or the ingenious slinger, which is a device that throws darts via elastic cords. They have been deemed illegal and highly dangerous but local authorities.