Joyeux Anniversaire Alexandre Dumas! (24 July 1802 – 5 December 1870)

From our stacks: Frontispiece “The Combat between the Musketeers and the Cardinal’s Guards Photogravure - From Painting by E. H. Blashfield” from The Works of Alexandre Dumas. Illustrated. (Vol. 11) The Three Musketeers Parts I and II. Edition De Luxe. Limited to One Thousand Sets. New York, Philadelphia, Chicago: The Nottingham Society, (18–?)

anonymous asked:

What is battle training like for apprentices? Since the cats aren't all the same size in this verse, I'd assume they'd have different methods for each clan, right? Of all the clans, which is more likely to incite violence and which prefers diplomacy?

Excellent question!

Each Clan has basic battle technique training, giving young cats the bare minimum self defense as quickly as possible so they don’t have to get beat up a few times to learn. However, like you said, each Clan is built differently, so each Clan has a separate, more advanced program specific to them.

ShadowClan, being the smallest, is comprised of the dirtiest motherfuckers known to cat. They’re taught to do whatever it takes to end the fight - slashes to the throat, stomach and inner legs are thoroughly encouraged, and no one is above a good strike right to the minerals - works just as well on females as it does males, by the way. Divert, fake them out, scream at the top of your lungs, pull their tails, outnumber, do what you must, and do not retract your claws. Try not to kill them, but don’t pussy out either (I know, I know, I’m sorry, but I had to get that pun in there at least once).

WindClan doesn’t like fighting at all, considering it a waste of time, so they’ll pull some tricks too. Ambushes during the sleeping hours, retreating backwards until their opponent is too tired to follow and then overwhelming them, casually letting it slip to their carnivorous friends where you can find some plump cats, and so on. The last one isn’t very popular, since predators prefer kittens to adults, but it will be used if necessary. In a one-on-one fight, they like to pull rope-a-dopes. Or, con-a-toms, I guess?

RiverClan is perfectly chill until you get in their face, in which case they deal with you like they do fish - get right up in your face, grab you, hold on tight, and start kicking, with as little warning as possible. They especially like to pull cats into the river and hold them there until they give in (or drown). Their double coat makes it harder to cut into them and they’re happy to lose a little fur if that means making you cry uncle. They don’t chase beaten foes, but they don’t help them get away.

ThunderClan, meanwhile, is a straight up beast. Their philosophy is that the best offense is a good defense, but they’re definitely prepared to fight. They train hard in as diverse a way as they can, which works well with their immense size and strength and makes each cat a unique case. They’ll utilize anything, swapping skills and tactics with loners and kittypets regularly to keep up-to-date. They hardly have to fight at all, honestly - just a polite reminder that they’re perfectly willing to works best when negotiating with the neighbors. The one weakness with them is that they have some dumb “nobility” thing going on, so they don’t fight dirty, even when it would benefit them.

Anyway, as to your second question: from most aggressive to most democratic, ThunderClan, ShadowClan, RiverClan, and WindClan.

2

Reasons this two second clip slays me:

  • Lexa has just escaped death
  • She also successfully defended her title as Commander
  • Won a kickass battle against a prince including some pretty fancy legwork, fake-outs, and sword twirls
  • Defeated her greatest enemy, both on a personal and on a political level, by hurling a spear in the air and straight into her heart.
  • The crowd is screaming out her name and her little Nightbloods are practically in tears. The noise of the celebration must be deafening

And she stands alone in the arena. 

No one comes out to hug her, no friends give her a victory high-five, no advisors clap her back, no mothers clutch her to their chest in desperate relief that she’s alive. No one even checks if she’s injured. And it’s achingly obvious that there isn’t ever anyone like this. Lexa stands alone in everything she does: she’s Commander of the Blood and she’s leader of the coalition. She’s the deadliest warrior and she’s an untouchable goddess.

(Ai laik Heda. Non na throu daun gon ai)
(I am Heda. No one fights for me.)

But this time, maybe for the first time since she was a tiny child fighting with a wooden sword, she dares a look up at the crowd while getting her breathing back under control instead of keeping her eyes on the ground. Chances a glance over to see if Clarke’s still there, if there might be a smile or a nod or even just a split second of relieved eye contact for her.  A grain of social comfort in a world where love is weakness and shows of strength are the only thing keeping her people alive. 

And there is - oh, there is. She catches Clarke’s eye and their respiration falls into in unison for a second. And then Lexa squares her shoulders, lifts her chin, and takes the deepest of breaths.