Sword Training For Young Students
“Begin,” is Xenograg’s command.
The three girls—the princesses Erwyn, Amanda, and Mystic—move in unison, dropping into the first combat stance. The three are wearing lamellar armor and wield wooden swords. Xenograg is also wearing armor, a hauberk of elven mail under his usual topcoat. A wooden sword is in his right hand while his left is tucked behind his back. Xenograg walks in a circle around his three students as they move through the assigned kata. His eyes watch all three at once, noting strengths and weaknesses.
“Third form…switch!” The girls have come to expect such impromptu changes and adjust with only a little hesitation. It will be many more months before any of them will be able to act without conscious thought. Xenograg completes his second circle and stops in front while the girls finish the third form. All forms end with a salute, and Xenograg returns it. Not always, though; not if a significant mistake is made by any of them.
“Good. First form again…begin.” The training session continues. Two to three hours a day, six days a week. The girls are young, but each knows the world is not a friendly place.