Engines in the Dark
“Vosir, they can be trouble. You never know if one has purchased his Title, or if he has actually earned that slick blade of theirs. You never really want to find out if they’re as good as they say.” – Vridah Lain
Vosir are the ceremonial duelists of the High Houses. When conflict arises among the Nobility, Vosir are brought in to fight the duels and bring “honor” to their masters.
They are exceptionally well trained, taking decades to master their craft. They fight with long-blades called Aelanith, which are quenched in venoms to make them more deadly (and painful.)
The traditional Vosir Academy, where all are trained, is in the town of Greypool. They training usually lasts 16 years, though it varies since no Vosir leave until they are ready.
Aelanith are gifted to Vosir when they come into service of a house. They are taken from defeated foes. A Vosir’s ranking in society is based on the number of blades that the Vosir owns. A Vosir never buys her own Aelanith. Also known as “weeping steel blades.”
Vosir are typically served by a Nain; a personal manservant who does everything that a Vosir does not. He serves the tea, sets up the tents, washes the clothes, poofs up the pillows and most importantly – assists the Vosir in battle. It is poor sportsmanship to slay a Nain in a duel.
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“He was taller than the barbarian, with silver shoulder armor crowning his lanky frame. A black silk cape hung from the pauldrons, insinuating that the Vosir was much larger than he really was. He removed the armor and cape, revealing that he was thin like a willow, with long sinuous muscles.
The Barbarian didn’t look intimidated at all. He just swung his great axe over his head, and the crowd cheered so loud it hurt my ears.
An assistant to the Vosir carried forth a long, wide case, that looked as though it had been roughly handled for many years. He opened it, and I saw that it contained a series of long swords, each as long as a man’s greatsword, but much more slender. The blades were as straight as an arrow, and were made from some shimmering silver. Obviously, the inside of the case was in much better shape than the outside.
The Vosir looked through the swords, carefully selecting the one which seemed to suit his needs. As he bowed to the barbarian, the case was quickly closed and towed away to safety.
The barbarian came at him in a flash, swinging his axe with a speed which was very surprising. (I will avoid going to the barbarian lands, myself.) However, the Vosir casually stepped to the side, and gracefully pulled his blade across the barbarians chest. The slash caused the barbarian to grimace in great pain, which surprised me, as a flow of blood began to cover his entire torso. He let loose a war cry of some sort (chilling) and brought the axe down to cleave the Antharr in two.
The axe slid down the entire length of the Vosir’s sword, making a “shing!” that made the crowd take a step back. Then, with the deftest of movements, he chopped the handle from the axehead, which was now stuck firmly in the deck, and brought the blade up and cut deep into the barbarians neck. He fell backward, his head falling to his feet.
Everyone aboard the ship gave the Vosir, and all of his assistants, wide berth for the rest of the voyage." – From the journal of Kamthus Marr