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Kys'Jarok (played by Riik) Topic Starter

Kys was not so easily put off-balance. The follow-up was relentless. Dropping down onto one lower hand, Kys used it to push and pivot themselves swiftly after Cyr, sensitive ears keeping track of the location from which her heartbeat and breathing was coming from. Listening for the tell-tale rustling of clothes and skin to keep track of her limbs. The ability to float might have saved Cyr from a fate that another being on her level may have fallen to, but Kys was patient.

Kys's change of direction had happened so immediately, that they were chasing Cyr before she had even come to a stop. Against an opponent who could float, however - one who was willing to go on the defensive at that - Kys was ready to switch styles.

As Kys reached the final few steps toward Cyr, they kicked off the ground into a flip, keeping an arm close to the ground until the last second in case they needed to change direction. If they could cut off Cyr from an upward motion, they could stop her from making the same escape. This time, as they came at her, they were a mess of limbs, seemingly ready to strike out at any direction at any time. Kys randomly reached out at Cyr in attempts to catch her. Any dodge attempt, they immediately pushed themselves back on course afterward and tried again. Each second was spent reading Cyr's movements, calculating her preferred limbs and tactics. Kys was ready equally for any counter-attacks. And they did not seem to tire - partly from perfecting their combat style, partly from enhanced stamina brought by their implants. Their hearing focus seemed to grant them reflexes beyond that of a sighted being. All it would take was one attack to connect, Kys was fairly certain, and it would be over. That was the difference 200 years of experience made.
Cyr (played by Voldarian_Empire)

Cyr turned to see Kys approaching and immediately moved to dodge, counter, and at this point...simply try to survive. She realized quite suddenly as Kys began their assault that leaving them to make the attacks was a mistake, they came as a flurry of 6 different limbs, any of which could strike or even grab. What Cyr was completely unable to do, however, was counter attack, or attack at all. Taking the defensive stance in competition with such a senior warrior who was determined to ground her locked her into a defense posture, and even though her defensive measures were valiant, it was obvious from the moment Kys began their follow up it was only a matter of time.

Cyr dodged and misdirected a few attacks, backing up with each impending attack, but even she could only hold off such a talented experienced warrior for a few moments. The final strike was one that came as a complete surprise, something Cyr had not expected at all. It a sudden moment of finality, Cyr was struck and found herself on the ground. The look up to Kys explained to her the results were now founded, if the previous combat hadn't. She smiled largely and looked to them, impressed by the skill she had just been conquered with as she pushed her arms on the ground, working her way to a seated position with her knees up.
Kys'Jarok (played by Riik) Topic Starter

Kys was pleasantly surprised with how long it took. Of course, the ability to float certainly aided with that regard. But even surviving the first attack was a good sign.

In the end, Kys loomed over Cyr, pinning her down with a foot, stepping off her eventually to let her get up.

Kys's breathing was deeper and extended in length, but still soft and quiet. As though it had warmed them up. When they spoke, their voice was still gentle and sagely, despite the child-like tones - by human reckoning. Even with the slight speech impediment caused by lacking a nose. "You're slippery, I'll give you that," they said. "If you're willing, why don't you join the training session with your sister? It might seem basic, but I'm willing to bet that my angle might be different to what you're used to. It might well enhance your own abilities further."
Cyr (played by Voldarian_Empire)

Cyr smiled at Kys as she floated off the ground and almost majestically to her feet while they spoke. Their compliment caused her smile to greaten, and her eyes fell a moment as she took in the recognition of a senior warrior. She glanced back at Siie only a moment as she was mentioned before returning her look to Kys. Siie, in response at feeling summoned, began walking forward with her eyes on the ground, her left arm across to hold onto her right in a display of clear awkward discomfort.

"I would love to," Cyr said excitedly, sounding rather girlish in her excitement. "Basic as it is, every angle adds a new foundation of skill....that's what mother says." Cyr stared at Kys several moments with an intrigued look, her eyes narrowing and a look of thought coming to her face. "I don't suppose you follow Voldarian arena rankings....you probably would have heard of our mother if you have. In fact, I'd bet you could do pretty well in the Arena if you ever felt the desire to compete," Cyr claimed with an almost longing look at Kys, though entirely not romantic in nature.

Cyr looked beside her to view Siie, who had fallen in line beside her looking down. She wasn't looking forward to the training, and it showed clearly in every manner of her body language. Still, she was willing to proceed.

"What do you think, sis, are you ready?" Cyr asked. After several moments Siie nodded, then looked up to Kys expectantly, to which Cyr followed suit, looking to Kys.

"I..I'm ready....I guess," Siie spoke up suddenly, realizing that Kys couldn't likely see her head nods.
Kys'Jarok (played by Riik) Topic Starter

"Oh, I'm not cut out for combat sport," Kys said. "I have no desire for competition. That's why I prefer to teach. Wait here."

Kys disappeared into one of the tents for a moment, and emerged again with a pair of blindfolds, each in a separate hand. These were actual dedicated blindfolds made out of thick black material rather than simple cloths. They each had an elasticated chord and were shaped to allow space for the nasal bridge. "When I tell you to, put these on," they said, holding them out. "I'd say no peeking, but honestly, I wouldn't be able to tell if you were. I know you probably lack the sensory means to make up for lack of sight in the way I do, which is the excuse I normally hear when teaching in this manner, but there are two reasons why it'll help you. The first is to open up the senses that you are not used to relying on so heavily. The second is because it's easier for me to teach you if you're experiencing the lessons through a perception closer to my own. Keep them around your neck or on your forehead or something for now though..." They turned toward Siie and placed a hand on her shoulder. Lack of sight was the primary reason they did not think to use a non-contact gesture instead. "I want to see where you are at, first things first. So to speak." Their smile showed they were aware of the irony of the statement.
Cyr (played by Voldarian_Empire)

Cyr appeared a little disappointed at the prospect Kys would simply dismiss her suggestion. It was something she genuinely wanted to see, their competing among her own kind (or half of them anyway) and seeing just where they might land. It was a terribly difficult ladder to climb with an entire race of competitive warriors pining over victory, yet some unexplained feeling told Cyr that Kys would be able to survive in the arena. She remained silent as Kys turned and disappeared into the tents, returning with the blindfolds. Each girl claimed one, and if there were different colors, they would aim for a color most matching their own energy color out of natural habit.

“Actually,” Siie said in a matter of fact statement and stepping out a little from behind her sister, “That’s not entirely true-” Before she could follow up on her explanation as to how their own senses could compare to Kys’, hoever, they turned toward her and extended an arm towards her. Siie froze and Cyr watched as she tensed up with wide eyes as Kys placed an arm on her shoulder. The moment lasted only a few seconds, and Cyr only watched at her sisters’ discomfort at the hand placed on her. It didn’t appear to be the same Voldarian discomfort at physical contact one familiar with the race might have observed, rather it appeared more the discomfort a younger human girl showed when a stranger made contact with them.

“Umm…okay,” Siie said as she reached up and took Kys’ wrist in both her arms with a soft grip. She attempted to gently remove their arm from her shoulder with an awkward and uncomfortable look towards the ground. As long as the arm was still in her possession, she would simply push it gently forward and release it as she stepped back, all the while making her inquiry of Kys. “Just how do you plan to do that?” Siie asked softly.
Kys'Jarok (played by Riik) Topic Starter

Kys's hand was easy to move, as they did not exactly resist. In response, they pulled away entirely and picked the nearest unoccupied mat. "Come," they said, stopping in the middle and turning to face Siie. Their arms were held out slightly, allowing access to their torso. Of course, Kys did not make gestures for social or instructional purposes. They had something else in mind with this stance.

"Hit me," they said calmly. "Don't hold back." One hand patted the middle of their fluffy belly. Though it was hard to say with the fur there, it didn't look particularly protected by muscle. "Right here. As hard as you can." It would, of course, be safer for Kys to be hit in the face. Their skull was extra thick, after all. But they did not want Siie to injure whatever extremity she favoured. The soft flesh of their belly was a much safer target. And Kys could handle a punch, even from a muscular and battle-hardened opponent.
Cyr (played by Voldarian_Empire)

Siie’s jaw opened at the idea, and her head turned back to look at Cyr a moment as if for reassurance. Her sister nodded and moved to the side as she watched. Siie stepped up before Kys and fumbled with herself awkwardly. “I-I don’t know….this doesn’t seem right,” Siie said nervously as she looked up to Kys, then over to Cyr, “This seems shameful.”

“If you were striking him for no reason maybe, but he is inviting you to strike him so he could help teach[/] you, Siie,” Cyr explained with a smile.

“But….I don’t want to hurt him,” Siie said looking over to Kys with a concerned face.

“You won’t, sister. I got a few hits in and didn’t seem to hurt him much. Besides,” Cyr said allowing her eyes to look over to Kys with a smirk on her face, “If he don’t want you to hit him….you won’t hit him.”

Siie continued to analyze Kys for a moment before finally falling into a battle stance, a generalized one with both fists up and spreading her legs apart slightly and lowering herself a bit. It wasn’t exactly a stance unfamiliar to battle, suggesting Siie had certainly worked through this portion of training prior. She bobbed up and down slightly as if she was trying to figure out how to charge at Kys as she continued to analyze them. “Oh,” she said suddenly, putting the blindfold around her neck and tying it off loosely around her neck.

She then walked over towards Kys, stopping right in front of them and continuing to bob up and down as she moved, and even after she stopped. “I’m sorry….I’m sorry if I hurt you Mr. Kys…..sorry….” Siie mumbled out concerned quite obviously about their safety more than her own. After psyching herself up a moment to strike someone simply standing there, Siie pulled back her left arm and thrust it hard as she could forward into Kys (presumably). The impact would be far stronger than Siie’s small frame led on, hitting quite hard for even a grown muscular individual, male or female. Despite the fact she was apparently lacking in combative knowledge, her arms were innately strong weapons.

"Sorry...sorry, are you okay?" Siie asked looking up to Kys's face as if to read their expression, but alas it was merely instinct. She stepped forward, reaching out as if to rub the area she had impaled with her fist gently, like that would somehow repair any damage she may have caused. Cyr smirked in the background watching her sister, rolling her eyes as she attempted to make amends with Kys' midsection.
Kys'Jarok (played by Riik) Topic Starter

Though Kys's body crumpled slightly at the impact, it was entirely from the momentum and force. They otherwise neither staggered, grunted or even altered their breathing. It was like punching a padded punching column chained the ground and ceiling. Though Kys had most certainly had worse, discipline and the safety of the knowledge their cybernetics would repair any non-terminal damage were the primary cause of the calmness. They seemed amused by Siie's treatment of their softly fluffy belly.

"Well that's good," they simply said. "I see there will be no need to work on your athleticism. At least, from a general standpoint. I can't say that I can judge your strength on the basis of your species, however." They patted her firmly yet non-painfully on the head, then stepped back a couple of paces. "Before I have you try again... do I really appear masculine to your species?"
Cyr (played by Voldarian_Empire)

Siie continued rubbing and patting at the spot she had struck until Kys made a move toward her. She looked up at their face when they began speaking, but as they reached out, she stalled and moved her leg back a single step as if to retreat. Her arms froze, up in front of her but no longer touching Kys as they placed their hand on her head in an almost child approving kind of gesture. Her head ducked slightly as they patted, but otherwise she did nothing to avoid the contact.

As Kys stepped back, Siie reached up and touched her hair pieces, making sure they weren’t displaced by the contact with Kys and correcting any discrepancies that had occurred. It was when Kys posed the question about their apparent gender that both Cyr and Siie both looked to them immediately. After a moment they exchanged confused glances, devolving to the only answer their upbringing could fall upon.

“We…uhh…” Siie said, grasping her hands together and fidgeting uncomfortably while avoiding what would be eye contact if Kys had eyes.

“We are sorry, Ms. Kys,” Cyr piped up, “We have never seen your species before, and humans generally assign male pronouns, at least the humans we lived around most recently.”

“Honestly you remind me mostly of my cat, Lucas,” Siie admitted with a big smile on her face. She stared back at the spot on Kys with a shy smile, resisting the urge to pet their soft fur again.

“Siie!” Cyr exclaimed with a hard look, clearly scolding her sisters comment. She turned with a sigh to look at Kys, “We apologize if we have offended you ma’am, we meant no offense. It’s just a misunderstanding.”
Kys'Jarok (played by Riik) Topic Starter

"Mx., actually," Kys corrected. "Though honestly, it's not mr., ms. or mx. anything... just Kys." They smiled in amusement. "It's not even my name really. I don't technically have a name. And Kys'jarok has served me just fine as an identifier. Even if its origins do bring back bad memories." They clapped their lower hands together and took a similar stance to before, this time with their arms at their sides. It was almost like it was identical to the stance they had taken during the spar with Cyr. "I shall have to meet this cat of yours," they joked, not really intending to follow up on that offer. After all, it wouldn't really be appropriate. "Ok, try and hit me again."
Cyr (played by Voldarian_Empire)

“Mx??” Cyr and Siie both said with great confusion in their voices as they once again looked to each other. Before they could, Kys continued, and the pair both looked back to them and listened with the same confused expressions on their faces. The two both stared at them with their own individual thoughts on the subject. Regardless of their own opinions, they were both genuinely wondering about the lack of a name, though the lack of gender made sudden sense to one of the two at least.

“Oh, umm….sure,” Siie said with a nervous giggle as she walked back over towards Kys, “Maybe when we are done here parnta will let you come over a while.” It was unclear by her behavior whether she understood the joke, and again Cyr laughed to herself and rolled her eyes at her sister.

“Okay, um….are you ready? Cuz I really don’t want to hurt you Mx-er…Kys,” Siie said softly as she raised her fist and held the other arm out at Kys’ belly as if to aim her shot. It was a few moments of her standing there, swaying a little from side to side before she finally made her move. “Okay….here I go,” she warned, before thrusting her, this time, right fist forward in an equally strong strike at Kys’ belly. Should it impact them, it would hit with almost the exact same force her left had had prior, close enough even that discerning which hand might be dominant, if either, was virtually impossible.
Kys'Jarok (played by Riik) Topic Starter

This time, calmly and without effort, Kys sidestepped. As they did, they turned so that their tail was in front of Siie as though ready to catch her. The reason was immediately evident as they attempted to pull firmly at her ankle with and outstretched foot. It wasn't an all-together difficult-to-dodge counter, but it was a decent enough test of attentiveness and to a degree, balance.
Cyr (played by Voldarian_Empire)

Siie clearly expected to hit Kys, and as they moved her midsection almost flung itself forward as their tail came around her. She reached out and attempted to wrap her arms around it while stumbling forward. As she worked to grasp it, she noticed the movement of Kys’ foot, looking down and pulling that foot up as she noticed Kys going for it. It wasn’t completely successful, as Siie managed to move her foot quick enough to avoid being completely grasped. Still it took hold of her momentarily, and she stumbled her way out of their foots grasp and rolled away from them as she grasped at their tail and stumbled her way forward.

It was most likely that Kys would steady her, using their tail and even other limbs if they thought it necessary. If not Siie would eventually stumble to a stop before turning to view Kys. Regardless, she had an embarrassed and frustrated look on her face as she looked at them.
Kys'Jarok (played by Riik) Topic Starter

Kys did indeed steady Siie, bracing her back to a secure position with their lower arms whilst they fondled with the broach on their scarf with the other pair idly. "Well, it's a start," they said. "I think that's all I need though."

They clicked their fingers in Cyr's direction, though the sound was muffled by their fur. "Come. Let's get ready to begin." Their ears flickered hopefully as they listened out toward the path. Wondering if anyone else was going to show up.
Cyr (played by Voldarian_Empire)

Siie folded her arms and looked down as Kys spoke, clearly upset at either her performance, or their analysis of it. Cyr, who was listening intently the entire time, nodded as Kys gave her instruction. Many times she was the senior warrior in a situation back home, but she had been instructed on respect to her core by both of her parents, and identifying Kys as a senior warrior, she nodded at them and moved to the location she believed Kys wanted her. Beforehand, however, she walked over to her sister and gently took her arm in her hand, pulling her close and speaking very softly to her. It was unlikely anyone would hear the words she whispered who didn’t have hearing beyond that of what the universe identified as the ‘normal’ spectrum.

“Hey, you are doing fine,” Cyr whispered to Siie.

“No I am not, you saw how he-“

“He is almost as good as mother…that’s why he makes it seem so easy,” Cyr explained, “and why you should do your best to learn everything he….well, they can teach.”

Siie stared at Cyr several long moments, before nodding and looking back to Kys. Cyr looked back as well and moved toward her position as Siie dropped her crossed arms and attempted to lose her attitude. Neither one of the girls believed Kys had heard them, as softly as they had whispered.
Kys'Jarok (played by Riik) Topic Starter

"Blindfolds on," Kys ordered gently, then proceeded to move the girls into position. They had them lined up side-by-side with plenty of space between them, but also a decent margin to the sides of the mat as well. Kys then took a position in front and continued to a position that had them form a fairly equilateral triangle. "Focus on your senses of hearing and touch," Kys continued to guide them. "The mat beneath your feet. The air against your body. My voice. The distant sounds of others."

Kys continued making sensory recommendations as they quietly and slowly paced in a semi-circle across the mat. Instructions on breathing technique and a few meditative pointers were woven in, all in a bid to acclimatise the girls to the world beyond sight. Kys did not expect a sense of familiarity with the status to form right away. Nor indeed at all throughout the session. Nor did they expect that regular practice of these techniques would let a being function without sight to the same level of efficiency that they did. It was, however, a helpful start, particularly in the case of forming confidence in acting without sight. And regular practice would most certainly reduce reliance on sight and strengthen the other senses.

During this first step, the girls were not tasked with any actual manoeuvres or movements. It was more like a standing meditation than a martial arts lesson.
Cyr (played by Voldarian_Empire)

Cyr and Siie both responded to the instruction faithfully by applying their blindfolds as soon as Kys had instructed. It was relatively clear from the beginning, as one might expect, who struggled more with the loss of their vision. While Cyr simply spread and lowered her legs slightly to ground herself a bit better, Siie seemed to lose herself a little. Her hands went up as if to guard herself from incoming objects in a 45 degree angle in either direction, even knowing their weren’t any. She, too, lowered herself a little, bending her knees but not spreading them apart, clearly showing more dependence on her vision. This was shown even as Kys guided them into position. While Cyr moved slowly and methodically, without maneuvering her arms much at all, Siie gripped their fur in a light fist as she was guided to her position.

“I don’t think I like this,” Siie had complained a little while Kys escorted her to her spot. Worst of all was her anxiety….Kys was a new person and someone she wasn’t sure she could trust, but even they weren’t what concerned her most. An unreasonable and illogical level of stress accompanied Siie as she realized anyone could walk up and take advantage of her in some way, and while it wasn’t true that she was powerless to stop them necessarily, she certainly felt that way.

Cyr stood there, taut and ready and half expecting Kys to attack at some point, though she expected something light and easy that wouldn’t cause much pain. She also figured considering the display she would be first, and direly hoped she would be. It was difficult to listen to her sister’s concerns uttered through her light bemoaned grumbles, but she knew this was for Siie’s benefit. She largely wanted to call out to her in this moment, but she thought this was a good moment for Siie to learn to be self reliant. She couldn't be sure of it, though she suspected Kys would step in if they figured Siie needed it, they were after all, a master warrior. Siie, of course, stood with her arms out and knees bent, not sure what to expect and not much liking her lack of vision. As Kys spoke, however, she seemed to calm down, doing her best to reproduce the actions they instructed. While they seemed easy for Cyr to pick up, Siie’s anxiety and stress levels gave her a little more trouble.
Kys'Jarok (played by Riik) Topic Starter

"Life and energy surrounds you," Kys was saying as they wrapped up the first part of the lesson. "Feel it. Predict it. Every rustle of sound. Every burst of air. It is like the shower before the downfall. With enough practice, you can sense what is to come. And perhaps more importantly, you can feel your body's limitations. The wobble before the fall. To guide your movements and find the optimal dance."

Kys slowly walked back toward the girls, purposefully moving in an audible way. They made their way behind Cyr. "I am now going to show you a simple meditative manoeuvre. Normally, it's used to centre your energies and find inner peace, but it is a good starting point for what I am to teach you. Eventually, you will be adapting your actions to outside stimuli and preparing your reactions for the unseen. But first..."

Gently, Kys started guiding Cyr's limbs into a fluid almost-dance-like motion. A sort of slow, meditative tai chi-like selection of arm stretches, wrist-rotations, side-steps and transitions between stances. It was a ten-second loop of motions, which Kys eased Cyr into with gentle use of their four arms and prehensile feet. When they were satisfied Cyr had memorised the sequence, they headed over to Siie, speaking before getting too close as though reading her unease and not wanting to catch her by surprise.

"Your turn now," they said gently. "Don't worry, the movements are not hard. The difficulty will come from reacting to future commands, sounds and rhythm." As before with Cyr, they started guiding Siie into the sequence.
Cyr (played by Voldarian_Empire)

Kys’ words fell easily on the girls ears, in particular Cyr who was currently quite calm and collected. What Kys probably didn’t realize was how their explanation of energy truly did relate to exactly what Cyr was doing to track them, and was the only ‘blind’ sense she had ever used in training prior. That said, it wasn’t terribly difficult for her to ‘see’ Kys coming, despite the fact she relied less on her hearing than Kys might have liked.

Cyr’s brow furrowed, however, wondering just how a Voldarian, or even a Humarian as she was, would ‘center’ their energy, and what good centralizing it would do. She took Kys’s words literally, rather than understanding the implications of the terminology behind them.

When Kys placed their hands on her, Cyr very gracefully maneuvered with them, smiling lightly as she did. She wasn’t entirely sure how it was meditative, but somehow, seeing as dancing was form of communication with her races deities, it felt religious, and soothing. Cyr even hummed slightly to herself, secretly singing inwardly a message she created for Lykka, her own Goddess. Even when Kys stopped, and left her, she maneuvered in slight, as if framing the dance while humming the song with a smile on her face.

Siie’s head turned, hearing Kys coming up behind her. She greatly appreciated the announcement they gave her, rather than walking up and just grabbing her, or worse, testing a training method by slapping her in the head or some other karate kid action she had seen on TV and half expected to endure. As Kys took hold of her, she grasped whatever parts of their fur she could in a light fist, feeling somehow comforted by their soft fur in her hands….perhaps it reminded her of Lucas.

Siie’s dancing was less graceful, particularly while blindfolded. The same detection method Cyr was using to track Kys was something Siie never bothered to pay a lot of attention to. Even if she had, her level of stress likely would have clouded the ability anyway. She moved as she was gestured, nearly falling a few times when a foot was asked to leave the ground. Her arms mostly worked well, but trying to balance in a world of darkness seemed like her largest chore, and anytime she felt her balance slipping, she gripped more tightly onto Kys’ fur and groaned softly. She would finally begin catching on, though the balance issue seemed to remain for some time before mostly subsiding.

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