Day 092: Kai Training
Summary: Wren has Kai meet him at the training grounds to measure her progress and talk about things.
Date: Day Month Year
Related: None
Kai Wren 


Training Grounds — New Coesbur

Four long, low buildings encircle and dominate the space set aside for new Coesbur's 80-strong gonakru. Walls of thick wooden logs notched and stacked carefully together combined with roof's made of recycled material; ranging from corrugated metal panels to the the half-rusted hood of an old vehicle. Barracks in which the approximately fifty-odd Warriors and their Seconds live if they do not have family of their own.

Drying racks of meat and stretched hides, the bounty of those who serve as hunters in their leisure hours frequently litter the space between buildings or are strung from lines overhead to keep them out of reach of the local wildlife, and the rings of communal fires frequently bubble with the current offering for the hungry.

The training space itself is surrounded by the bunks from the rest of the village; the tall stumps of trees spiked for a salmon ladder, or smoothed to a nigh mirror finish Cockaigne pole. Pells with padded leather striking zones, and archery targets made of old signs are set up with their backs facing an earthen berm. Raised logs thinner than the width of a foot to help train agility and sparring rings demarked with the broken red stone of old pavers all intended to help build the strength and agility of Coesburs fighting corps.

Day 92

Wren has been busy building. Which is sorta important, but it's been leaving stuff desired in terms of actual training with Kai. However, lifting wood and dodging falling trees makes for excellent strength training, so it's not like it's been a complete wash. The good of the village tends to come before the good of any single person. But he's ignored that for long enough decided that it was time to actually get some real work in with young woman since just because you're not at war doesn't mean you shouldn't keep your wits about you. And sharp. So he's taken some time out of day, set it aside to actually make sure that she be at the training grounds since he told her to be there. And that's where he's standing, leaning up against a newly made fence, perhaps making sure it's not going to fall over.

Kai has also been busy building, despite being unused to the heat or the labor, she's at least endeavored to do so without complaint, even if sometimes the strain is probably more visible on her than she'd really prefer. She's not about to complain about being ordered to report to the training grounds instead, even if she's rubbing her arm as she comes in. She makes her way over to him with a small smile,"S'pose that's why this got finished so soon.. needed to make sure we didn't lop down any of the tree's they wanted to keep, huh?"

The fact that she can lift a sword at all after living in a low-g environment is a miracle. Or so Wren thinks after having the concept explained to him once. How do they keep their bones from breaking from just walking around? Questions he doesn't bother answer. "Something like that." he offers. "It's general housing for now, warrior barracks when more get finished. I have feeling we'll all bee sleeping very closely with another this winter. Don't even know if I'll get my home done in time. Focus on mother's house first." A wooden and weighted practice sword, otherwise known as a waster, is tossed at her. "I don't need you getting dull. Because speaking of focus, been too concerned with the village and Silver's current habit of being really distant to give you more attention."

Genetic experimentation. Obviously. Damned freaks. There's a nod for his words,"I figured it would be like that.. the stuff for the community first.. the big families after that, then the small one's sort of last.. makes the most sense in terms of insuring we at least all have a roof over our heads, even if the conditions aren't ideal." she catches the waster.. probably not with as much grace as usual simply because it's been a hard few weeks already,"The only thing making me dull is the heat." she grunts,"I mean.. it was different when we landed, but this? I can't remember it ever being this hot.. and if it was it pretty much meant something was seriously screwed up in that section." she gives a wry kind of smile,"But I'm never gonna complain about swinging a sword around." she does give it a couple of practice swings, trying to keep her grimace to herself as she tests her body's current willingness to operate properly.

"You'll be changing your tune once winter rolls in. Then you'll be wondering how it ever got this cold. Fall will be nice thought. I look forward to the bonfires. If we manage to have any this season." Wren smiles a bit wistfully. For him, the heat just means he doesn't wear a shirt. Or well, he hasn't been wearing a shirt. Hard labor and a lot of sweat so there just doesn't seem to be a reason with making another trip for one more piece of clothing to scrub and beat out on a rock. "Luckily, nobody really likes to wage war during the summer. Except maybe the Sankru. But..they like the heat, I hear. But it's the dry heat. This…stuff just hangs in the air. Never liked it. Fair warning, some of the barracks get plenty ripe on the bad days." Moving away from the fence, he starts to swings his shoulders out. "So," he starts. "If you had to take away one thing from your training so far, is what do you think will serve you the best in the coming years?" he asks, then flicking a hand at her in a 'come get me' motion.

"Climate control. Not going to lie.. I miss climate control." Kai sighs,"But I wouldn't swap everything else, just for that. Maybe after three months of summer in the barracks next year." she gives a lopsided smirk. Come at me, he says, but she doesn't immediately at least, opting instead to give them both the chance to limber up,"Aim for the soft spots." is the first thing she drawls with a chuckle,"There's not any one particular thing. Bullet's hurt. Charging in to them 's a dumb idea. Tactically having coverage from ranged is best if you're going to do it.. but if you have to, there's no point in being shy about it.. you have to just suck it up and do it and hope that you don't die." there's a tightness to the smile she gives,"Blades and arrows also hurt, for the record. And while not being aware of their blade tip's gonna get you stabbed, if you pay attention to their posture and wrist you can generally work out where not to be. And, charging you is just a dumb idea."

Wren will give Kai the luxury of time. "Alright. Very good lessons to learn. Nothing wrong with any of those. And yes, charging is the last thing you want to do, but sometimes there really isn't a much better option. It's a last resort kind of measure. With any luck, bullets won't be as such a large issue for us." The sword is held loosely at his side, waiting. But knowing him, he's fast enough to bring it up when he needs to. "So, you know combat better. What do you think you've learned about the people. The kru. What have you learned from me? Or perhaps the rest of the family?" And then he lays a bigger question on her. "What have you learned about yourself?"

<FS3> Opposed Roll — Kai=melee Vs Wren=dodge
< Kai: Good Success (7 8 4 2 3 1 6 2) Wren: Success (1 3 2 8 5 4 1 4 2)
< Net Result: Kai wins - Marginal Victory

Distraction is good, right? She's got better patience than she had, and she does wait for him to give her an opening, even if she winds up being deflected by his own waster and elects to circle off before talking because well, otherwise she's probably just gonna get herself flattened,"Going it alone is a dumb idea. Up there, seemed like everyone was concerned about making sure they got their bit. Some people gave more of a shit, but it seemed like when you got right down to it in the end too many were about themselves first and that without the laws that the community would collapse in a screaming heap. The Trikru don't work like that. Some of the stuff is similar in principle.. more than similar, but there's a whole wide world out there. Other cities, other villages.. the Ark's together cos they hafta be.. the Trikru are together because they want to be. They support their own, protect their own. People are valued for choosing to contribute in the ways they can, not just whether they've got the right job. That strength comes not just from the individual, but from the support of those who choose to be their family.. their extended kru." she doesn't answer the second part of it right away at least. Probably she's mulling it over.

<FS3> Opposed Roll — Wren=Melee Vs Kai=Dodge
< Wren: Good Success (8 6 3 1 4 2 6 3 6 4 6 7) Kai: Good Success (2 4 7 7 6 8 3 1)
< Net Result: Kai wins - Marginal Victory

It doesn't seem like training is the whole point to why Wren's brought her out here. Maybe he just knows her well enough that training is the best time to pick her brain on stuff. The waster he's holding is brought up enough and in time, but it's enough to glance the blow away entirely. So, point to her. He even looks happy, prideful about it. Even he draws the sword back to swing at the back of her knee in a counter-strike. Because he never full out attacks Kai. It's always her attack and then his counter. Back and forth like that, because there's nothing to be gained by him just steamrolling her over. "You're learning." he says, though he doesn't say about what. "You know it, you say the words, but do you believe it? You can say a thing and do a thing, but do you understand the words you speak? The meaning behind them?"

Kai skitters out of the way just barely from his attack. Slow work's always good, and fast work even at not quite full strength also helps, definitely,"Words are lies. You know the answer to that, you just want to hear me say it out loud." she grunts,"I offered to Sonia's niron that I would fight him, one-on-one, to try and avoid the fight that occurred between our people and hers. I didn't want Trikru to have to fight Trikru. I'm not suicidal, I wasn't going to offer agreement to go with five of them like they originally wanted to get the others to surrender peacefully.. and Britt was having none of that anyways. But seeing as it was obvious that in their eyes I was Skaikru and they weren't going to stand for my presence I tried to at least avoid the fight." she huffs a breath as she circles, staying away as she talks,"So you tell me, do I understand them? Do I hunt for the family and bring them what I find? Do I work with our gonakru.. fight for them? Defend them? Do I do my part?"

Wren tosses the waster by the handle from one hand to the other casually, nodding his approval at her getting out of the way. "Only because you using words is the hardest challenge for you. Which tells me, in your case, it would be more honest. I heard about what you did with Sonia's niron." He says nothing about whether or not he approves of what she tried doing. "You can do a thing without feeling it. You can mimic motions and feel nothing by them. I'm not saying this is how you are. Even if you are still hesitating on it all means to you. To note, I have never doubted your loyalty. To know a thing is to understand it. And you have only had two months with us. So you know, but do you understand?" Leave it to Wren to ask the weird questions where someone's heart lies. "However," he continues to circle her. "you've come far from the raw-boned girl I first met. That's to be exalted. But it's only been two months. I'm very proud of your progress. It's becoming less and less a matter of your skill. Clearly you've gotten better at dodging. Now, it's just a matter of heart."

<FS3> Opposed Roll — Kai=melee Vs Wren=dodge
< Kai: Good Success (1 2 8 2 7 5 4 7) Wren: Success (4 2 2 1 5 3 3 8 6)
< Net Result: Kai wins - Solid Victory

Mimic motions. There's Kai's temper, she's slower thanks to it being hot and her being tired, but the suggestion of 'feel nothing' touched a nerve to judge from the way she switches from circling to dart in for a strike,"How many times have you lectured me about staying calm?" she demands, the irony not entirely lost even on her given the irritation in her voice,"I'm not a fucking sociopath, and if I felt nothing, I sure as hell picked the wrong goddamn path for faking it. So you already know the answer to that one, too, and you're asking it just to see how pissed off I'm going to get." which, in it's own way at least makes it easier for her to stow away the annoyance.

Wren just grins wolfishly, baiting her. Testing her. He feels the sting of the waster, but seems to shrug the blow off. "What's it going to be, Kai? You going to get mad? You going to lose your composure? You going to let that thin skin get the best of you? C'mon! Where is it?!" A hand snaps forward, trying to shove her back. Yes, he's testing her. Hes was trying to hide the baiting earlier, but now it's clear. To see if those lessons about controlling one's anger has any kind of affect. "Where is it? So quick to react, so fast to make snap judgements, where is it Kai? I'm right here? Make your move, try to strike me down if you can." Another shove. "Are you the same angry girl, mad and enraged at the world, or are you something else? Something more?"

<FS3> Kai rolls Resolve: Success. (3 5 5 5 1 7)

So tempting.. SO TEMPTING, it's not hard to read in Kai's expression that she's angry, especially when he shoves her. It's in the way her grip shifts on the waster and those teeth of hers are bared.. and then he shoves her again and gawd she wants to, so wants to to the point that the knuckles of her hand are white with the desire even as she backs off further and forces herself to not give in to the temptation,"Slow gets you killed." she snaps irritably,"Indecision kills. And some people.. some people.. deserve to have their heads kicked in.. an' I'm not going to apologize for that. Doesn't mean I'm going to go beat on someone just because I can. I didn't punch the girl that got Tink boxed. I didn't punch Cass. Fuck I didn't even punch Breen for being an insulting ass just to be insulting when he was trying to be all snidely superior about how taking shit from the mountain is fucking looting. So again.. you tell me. Last person I punched in anger just cos they deserved it was that Azgeda asshole. And I wasn't going to let Britt take them both on alone cos that's wrong, and you know it's wrong. Even though I'm grateful as fuck that she handled the kruheda."

<FS3> Opposed Roll — Wren=Melee Vs Kai=Dodge
< Wren: Good Success (4 3 1 5 8 3 4 8 3 5 4 6) Kai: Failure (6 6 6 5 2 3 5 2)
< Net Result: Wren wins - Solid Victory

And Wren listens. And it's very possible he knows all of this. And he's patient enough to hear every single word, look at her body language. Lazily he turns the waster in his hand, as if casually spinning it so the pommel is upright now. The older warrior gives a single nod, then his hard snaps forward, sending the pommel of the waster right into her gut, hard enough to knock the wind out of her. "Good." he utters. "You're controlling it, but you're still blinded by it. That, Kai, is improvement."

Oof. Kai wasn't expecting that one, clearly, given the way she folds and has to suck in a few breaths to try and recover,"I'm not blinded by it." she grunts insistently, watching him even as she works on trying to recover,"I'm just not a fucking robot. I just gotta remember to keep my guard up. Granted.. part of that is simply that I don't want to hurt you, which is not the case when I am in an actual fight with someone else."

"I don't want you to." Wren states evenly. "I don't want you to hold back against me. I can't gauge your readiness if you do. And frankly, it's annoying." In that same token, he's always held back on her too for the same reasons. But he's also the teacher, he doesn't have anything to prove to her. She's the student. "Keep your guard up in training, war, and people you don't know. You've done well by lowering around people that are worth it being done so around. You've done well."

<FS3> Opposed Roll — Kai=melee Vs Wren=dodge
< Kai: Good Success (5 3 5 8 7 4 5 6) Wren: Failure (1 2 4 3 2 6 4 1 2)
< Net Result: Kai wins - Solid Victory

"Subconsciously whether one intends it or not they will always hold back." Kai points out to him as she straightens. But well, careful what you ask for, because she she does spring forward to reach out and smack him, not with anger, just to prove that yes, she bloody well can,"There's a difference between the basic desire to kill someone and not kill someone. I don't want to kill you. I don't consider that a bad thing. I'd have to be actually a sociopath to feel comfortable with that."

<FS3> Opposed Roll — Wren=Melee Vs Kai=Dodge
< Wren: Great Success (8 6 1 7 4 8 4 5 5 2 8 2) Kai: Good Success (8 1 1 4 6 2 7 4)
< Net Result: Wren wins - Solid Victory

Now Wren actually feels that. For the first time, Kai actually inflicts real pain on him, enough to make take a step back and look at his shoulder she hit. Skin sore, red, and angry. "Of course there is. These aren't real weapon. You'd have to try very hard to kill someone with it." Not that you couldn't but that's besides the point. "I have to figure how close you are to being ready. Because I don't want to be like Thesda. For as much as I respect her, I believe she's making a mistake. And she has been lacking in her training because he's off spending too much time with his Skaikru niron. Also, I don't believe he's simply mature enough for the responsibility that he will be beholden to. A concept I'm glad I don't have to beat you into trying to grasp." He rounds on her, flickering his waster forward, swinging at the legs while his shoulder barrels into her. If she's goes down onto the ground, he'll offer her a hand. "And maybe I simply have higher expectations for any daughter of mine. Ones that I know she can meet. Because I believe that she can."

Kai does actually hit the ground, it's not that she didn't see it coming, she moved, it was even a good attempt at moving, it just wasn't quite good enough to avoid getting knocked on her ass. She accepts the offered hand up again with a rueful kind of laugh,"Which is the other thing.. these are not like our real weapons." she takes a moment to dust herself off before going to limp off to collect the waster,"He's a scout, I might be able to not trip over my own feet when with them, but well.. 's kind of different, from what I've seen? Like Britt and her archery." she shrugs her shoulders,"But what makes you say he's not ready for the responsibility?"

"I don't think he's mature enough for it. His attitude still strikes me as not prepared for that fact that people will no longer look at him like he's a learner, not expecting him to know. That'll change. He'll be expected to carry his own weight. It's not for a lack of training, or the knowledge, or skills, or anything like that. But mental and emotional maturity to be able to handle just what will be expected of him. Sure he might say he does, but the way he acts tells me otherwise. Personally, I'd say you're farther along than he is, but neither of you are ready yet. But I will say you're more ready than he is." Then a shrug. "Thesda would find me saying so offensive but, if he fucks up it'll reflect back on her for not taking enough time to prepare him properly."

Kai ahs,"We're.. already expected to carry our own weight.. aren't we?" she sounds vaguely puzzled,"At least.. I try not to let down the team.. I hope they're not just going easy on me." both from the element of 'oh green eden if they are how much worse could it be?' and 'I don't want to be the weakest link', given the grimace she gives the thought probably obvious on her face,"Everyone fucks up, Wren. I mean.. yeh. We've spoken before about how I want to make sure that I'm not being a shitty reflection on you as a First. But everyone fucks up.. no-one's perfect. I mean.. while I don't regret backing Britt up, I do regret that it had the potential to bring trouble for you. I don't like lazing around.. because I don't like it, but also I'm not going to have it said that your Second's lazy and doesn't pull her weight. So I get annoyed when I'm hurt because it's like.. the very small skill set in which I feel like I'm not flailing around like an idiot is.. unavailable. And I worry about the village being detrimentally affected by the fact that I'm still learning how to hunt and gather and don't bring as much back as others."

"Not everyone hunts or gathers. The injured aren't expected to do a lot. Hell, most times, we don't particularly enjoy the injured helping out at all." Wren eyeballs Kai at that last point. "Injured people trying help just get in the way, rather they heal, get better faster, and then get back to assisting. Nobody is going to be or expecting Britt to be doing much of anything after her insides almost exploding on her. Yes, you carry your own water, that's expected, but at the same time, we're not going to expect you to know everything that you're supposed to be doing. And that's part of why I'm not ready to make that decision. It's not just about fighting wars and combat, it's about being a productive member of the kru. That's apart of being a Second, learning how to be your own person while learning what it means to be apart of the village. So, you're worried about not being able to do more beyond hard labor? We'll work on that. You want to work on hunting, we'll work on that. Or gathering? Can work on that too." Then a nod. "Yes, you're still going to mess up. I still mess up. Britt still messes up, that's not going to change no matter how old you are. The fact that you're asking these questions, that you're worrying about stuff like this does show my the urge for responsibility is there. So again, we still have to work to do, but you've come very far." And at that, he puts a hand on her shoulder. "If you keep working at this like you are, I see you being a warrior before winter sets in."

"No, but I'm better at that, and the skills translate better to my job than trying to babysit. Which, mind, is not to say it's not important, and if you remember, we did speak about me potentially taking on the role of surrogate for one of the Maunon children.. but being injured doesn't mean I'm helpless. I heal quickly, and I'm okay with dealing with pain. It doesn't mean that I'm not self-conscious when I'm not that great at bringing down deer, though I have thought about maybe putting together some cages and keeping some rabbits so we have a supply of fresh meat and furs come winter. I can also fish. I'm not as good at it as Afaye, but I'm not helpless.. it's simply acknowledging that in those respects I'm still learning what everyone else has known since they were old enough to walk. When I get the chance I bring stuff in for the kitchen, just like everyone else.. just that really right now it's important for people to be doing the jobs they're best at so that come winter we will all be comfortable."

Wren laughs. "We're not going to be comfortable no matter what, but we'll be alive. I hear where you're coming from, but remember, having someone injured work through just means it's going to take them longer to heal, and then they may not be ready for a situation that we would need them for. So, next time you're hurt, you're resting til you're ready to start again. I don't want to catch you doing things you shouldn't." The hand gives her shoulder a squeeze. "You're doing very well. There's just a certain amount of things that we need to get you more comfortable again with. We'll approach this topic again soon, but for now, find someone get some hunting points from. Being proactive in things you're not good at shows to everyone else that you're trying to help. And they will help you if they see that."

"I've known uncomfortable. Food and water sometimes had to be rationed. Especially as I got older and some of the systems began to fail.. there were times where the air wasn't so good up there. But unlike up there? We have greater control over how comfortable or not it's going to be." Kai points out quietly,"The resources are out there, we simply need the people to be able to bring them in, the places to store it, and the rest of us to work until there's enough room for everyone before the snow starts. And yes, I know it's the steheda's problem to plan for, not mine. And I know that as a Second my job isn't to worry about that kind of stuff, it's to obey, but those are the things that make me keep working when I'm tired Wren. The understanding that it's going to be rough, and what we do now is going to determine how rough it's going to be. So I try to make sure that I'm doing what I can. Because I accept that from what everyone's said.. it's going to be miserable, and freezing, and no matter how well I prepare it's going to be.. as bad as this heat is for me because it's just like.. no words or movies or anything can prepare you for the reality that is this planet and I'm probably going to be completely pathetic and whiney and do what needs doing anyways because that's part of what being Trikru is. And I have already been working on my hunting. And fishing. Tuan taught me how to fish. Khesu and Afaye were giving me tips about it.. they already know I'm trying to help." she pauses,"Or is someone trying to say I'm not?"

Wren shakes his head. "No, I haven't heard that at all. Maybe that just shows I need to stop being so busy myself and keep better check on you. I guess I haven't been because you've been so reliable lately. And the difference between summer and winter is at least you can keep putting layers on. Thankfully we don't do much during winter months. Get ready for a whole lot of nothing sparsed by the occasional hunt. Sure, it's going to rough and unpleasant, but with any luck, it'll be a wet winter. Toss you in a couple of snow banks to keep you on your toes." Then a nod. "You're thinking about a great deal. We all are. Not your problem? Hell, we don't do any of the planning. Our orders come down from Oxfor too. Just doing what he says. And well, beyond the general desire to want to keep eating. In the end, it will be okay. It just may end up being really cramped for a bit. So building? Not like you're not pulling your weight right now."

"So.. in other words.. I should invest in earplugs. Because bored people trapped in a confined space is a recipe for bad decisions to abound." Kai drawls with amusement,"Britt gave me a deer skin cape, it's actually pretty cool looking, even if it's way too hot to try it on right now." not to mention the wolf claw and stones necklace half peeking from her top, not that she elects to explain that one,"I've heard about snow. Snow can fuck you up.. though it can also be a very effective defense in case of invasion.. well, if it's harsh enough. Does the lake freeze in winter? I wonder." she looks off that way before nodding,"That's what I do, Wren. I recognize I'm not an expert.. and I'm not going to be an expert for years yet.. so I listen, and I try to anticipate problems. If you've got a fair idea of something going into it, you're less likely to be surprised to start out with. And you know.. hindsight might be twenty-twenty, but it's better to work it out beforehand than regret not thinking about it when someone's freezing or starving to death.. but yeh.. building. We probably ought to get back to that."

"Eh, not something you have to worry about, but more than a couple babies have been born the following summer because of boredom that weren't exactly expected." Wren winks at her. "The lake top does, yeah, but you walk out, cut a hole in the ice and you can fish. But you want to talk about boring…that's boring. Still, it works for getting food, it's just really…really, boring." There's a pat on her back. "It'll get figured out one way or another. But yeah, we should probably get back to it."

"That oughta be interesting. Walking on a lake. I wonder how the fish don't freeze." things to ponder. She'll have to ask a hydro-tech. Still she nods acceptingly as she turns towards the exit,"Oh I'm not worried about it.. just as long as I'm not in the front row of the peepshow. But.. yeh. At least I have a couple of books?"

"Count your blessings. Most of us are lucky if we ever get one our entire lives." Wren nods. "I'm told by Silver that the one I have is called Star Wars. Still can't make anything out of it. Reading is hard." Then he laughs, setting his waster down. "Oh, I don't know, some of the peepshows weren't that bad. Thankfully, I was never apart of them. You just sorta ignore it's happening and then make fun of them later for it." He gives a wave to her, getting to follow to get back to work.

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