So you DO do ask who knew Anyways I have another one for you can you do one where Hanzo and Mccree are riding horses together plz plz plz plz plz plz plz plz plz plz plz plz plz plz plz plz plz
Oh geez this has been in my box for a couple of months and I’m sorry this took so long oTL. And yes I do take mini requests but as I stated before it takes a while for me to get to them in most cases. oTL
I tried drawing them on horses and I could not make it work I’M SORRY!! But I remembered one of McCree’s data mined lines about a hover horse so…hopefully this’ll make up for it? ｡ﾟ(*´~`)ﾟ｡
Thank you for the request tho!
“I’m a cowboy. On a hover horse I ride” -Jesse McCree
Context: We’re all new players and we pretty much failed at keeping a group of bandits from robbing a carriage. Our mage is stuck straddled between the backs of the two horses that pulled it and are coming up to a log in the middle of the road. The DM rolls a 2 for one horse and a Nat 20 for the other.
DM: Okay the horse on the left completely wipes out on the log, but the other clears it. Roll for dexterity to determine which horse you end up on.
Mage (OOC): 14 So I stay on the Right one.
Me/Rogue (OOC): Wait a minute, a Nat 20? That’s like if it just sprouted wings and becomes a pegasus or something.
DM: *pauses* Sure okay I’ll roll for it. If I get exactly a 12 on this d20, it’s a Pegasus.
All: Wait, WHAT?
DM: *rolls* …. Okay so the horse leaps majestically into the air where the sunlight glistens off it’s pure white wings.
Can’t remember exactly how it went, but the Mage managed to navigate the Pegasus to the ground without killing either of them.
Me/Rogue (OOC): Okay we need to keep him. Anyone have any skill in Animal Handling?
Party (OOC): Nope.
Me/Rogue (OOC): Damn. Is the Pegasus intelligent enough for Persuasion?
DM: I mean, I guess?
Me/Rogue (Terrible at thinking on the fly): Okay buddy, you got a choice. You can just fly around purposelessly all day OR you can have this carrot I have. And you’ll get another carrot each day you stay with us. AND if you’re good I’ll throw in a sugar cube each week.
Me/Rogue (OOC): Okay I roll an 18
DM: Well somehow that worked. The Pegasus, majestic mythologicial being is swayed by the promise of a simple carrot and sugar cube. What do you name h-
Paladin (OOC): CHESTER
Mage (OOC): Oh yes! We should get him sunglasses at the next town!
Me/Rogue (OOC): Sunglasses? Really?
Mage (OOC): What? Protection against bright lights!
(A table of contents is available.This series will remain open for additional posts and the table of contents up-to-date as new posts are added.)
Part Four: Writing Travel With Non-Humans
If a list were made of the top mistakes made by–particularly fantasy–writers, surely travel, travel times, distances, and the needs of animals during that travel would be right up there. Consider for a moment that Frodo and Sam’s journey took approximately 6 months to get from the Shire to Mount Doom. But Pear, you say, it’s not like they were walking that whole time! They stayed in Rivendell for two months after he agrees to take the ring! And of course, you’d be right, but consider that they are two days in Moria, and it takes the group 7 days to get from Bree to Weathertop, a time frame which was just travel, for the most part. Take a look at it on a map:
And now consider the entirety of the world map:
Taking into consideration breaks for eating and sleeping, difficult terrain, horses, boats, and walking, Tolkien did a fairly good job of making sure the travel times for his world were accurate or at least plausible.
Now consider that 30 miles is the maximum a human can walk in a day without stops and without considering gear, and it’s more accurate to guesstimate ~10-15 miles. It’s ~40 miles from Washington DC to Baltimore, Maryland and can be driven in ~1 hour. Now consider that roads and highways have turned difficult terrain into easily navigable areas, and that cars have drastically lengthened how far and how long we can travel. A team of horses pulling a carriage can expect approximately 50 miles over an 8-12 hour day. A horse will tire from a gallop after approximately 3 miles, but could trot 15 miles without too much strain as long as a few breaks to walk were interspersed. It’s been recorded that on one particular journey, a horse averaged 31 miles per day, though 20 is a more reasonable.
(I haven’t put anything regarding companions with wings due to severe variability. Migrating Alpine swifts have been known to fly 200 days straight while other birds don’t even really glide very well. If your companion has wings, do very thorough research into wing bones and strength and do your best.)
My point is: We don’t go as far as we think we do, and neither do our creature companions unless we care for them properly.
Long story short, distance matters.
When you’re trying to decide how long it takes to get from one place to another in your story, or attempting to figure out how long it would take an advancing army to reach their destination, consider that our modern view of maps and distances has become severely warped. “It’s not that far,” and “They could make it there in a couple of hours,” and “They’ll be here tomorrow,” are common assumptions for writers, but they might not take into consideration that our characters, creature or otherwise, cannot travel all day without pause, even on roads.
Remember to take terrain into consideration. Your creatures accompanying your characters have different physiology than your humanoid characters, so how fast can they travel? Do they have the body strength to be able to carry someone, specifically the spinal strength? Remember that the more people you add to the back of a creature, the slower the creature will travel, even horses. Additionally, consider what their feet are made from. A horse’s hooves are a dense material that takes long usage fairly well (rocks and terrain difficulties aside) which is part of why they (and other hoofed creatures) make good pack animals and “vehicles,” alongside other factors. We don’t go around riding creatures with paws because paws rub raw faster when burdened with weight and asked to go long distances. Creatures traveling on their own legs will travel differently over different terrain. Remember when I mentioned earlier in the series that you should be thinking about where your creature companions originate from? Their physiology will be tailored to travel best over that kind of terrain. If they’re from meadows, rocky mountains will slow them down. Obviously, travel speeds will change depending on the terrain, and the endurance of your creatures will, too. Horses will become lame if rocks or other materials become lodged in their hooves (think about having a rock in your shoe!). Consider how terrain could impact your creature companion in similar ways depending on the construction of their feet.
Food & Water
The most common trope for feeding our humanoid characters on their journey is that they have rations in their packs: dried fruit, tough bread, hunks of cheese, dried meat jerky, etc. What’s often forgotten about is sufficient and appropriate food and water for creature companions. Water retention and metabolism rates vary widely across creatures. You can’t assume that they’ll function like your humanoids do.
When you were planning your creature companion and where they came from, I asked you to consider what kind of eaters they are (herbivore, carnivore, omnivore) to get a good basic idea of what your companions eat. They’re likely not going to be carrying around their food like your humanoids might, so you need to plan for your characters to either be hunting for the creature or to allow the creature to go off and hunt. But don’t just say, “They went off to hunt, returning three hours later with a bloody maw.” You need to know if the area they paused in has the types of foods your creature eats available. Know the environments they’re traveling in; know what’s around and what’s not. It’s okay for your creatures to go without a meal now and then, but it’s not going to make them happy or pleasant to be around the longer they miss out on food. Be aware of how their personality, their travel speed, their fighting capability, and their focus will be impacted when they are forced to go without food.
For emergency water supplies, it’s recommended to carry 1 gallon of water per person per day while cats and dogs generally need 1 gallon each per 3 days. These measures are not taking travel into account, which would raise the predicted amounts. We almost never think about having that much water hanging around our characters for their trek across wherever, but giving our creatures the breaks they will need and the water they’ll need often gets entirely forgotten. Take breaks. All-day travel is hard, hard work on anyone, car or not. Make sure your characters are traveling between places with potable water, whether that’s sources like rivers or cities with wells.
Stress, Sleep, and Special Care
Travel isn’t a walk in the park. It’s a long, grueling journey, filled with difficult decisions and dangerous encounters. There’s socializing and surviving, and it’s not as simple as going out to do the thing. Stress is going to come into play more and more the longer your characters and creatures travel. Think about how this increase in stress will effect your creature companions. Do they know what’s going on? What’s their perspective on the trip? Have they perceived themselves in danger yet? How will they react when they do? How do they deal with being forced to spend a prolonged amount of time in close quarters with others? Is that normal and welcome to them, or is it strange and not preferred? Will they seek out their own space or stick close to the others?
Remember that sleep is not going to be ideal. It may be few and far between, after long days of intense activity, interrupted by attacks, unfulfilling because of discomfort or anxiety, or any number of other things. You still need to consider how your creature would normally try to sleep, and then think about how they could if they needed to, because, trust me, they’re going to need to. Similar questions to those above should be considered including how your creature will handle going some sleepless nights. How will its mood and ability to handle changes in plan be impacted by lack of sleep? How about appetite and willingness to perform? All the problems we encounter with sleep, sleeplessness, interrupted sleep, and less-than-preferred amounts of sleep will need to be considered for your creatures, as much as for your humanoids.
Some creatures will need tending to when travel ceases, whether for a break or at the end of a day. They may need special attention like horses having their tack removed and a nice rub down, or creatures that traveled in a backpack or on a shoulder may need to wander a bit and stretch the legs. Please, please, pay attention to these things. There’s nothing worse than reading poor animal care from a farm boy going on their first big adventure. Casual mentions of the care and attention are sufficient, but completely ignoring this facet leaves out a big part of what travel is with a creature companion. If your creature is a mythical beast, break it down to its root characteristics to determine how they may need to be bedded down for the night. Are your dragons more lizard-like and likely to seek out warm places for the evening, perhaps burrowing for a nest in the ground? Are your hippogryphs able to find enough materials to nest in or do they take more to the horse side of things and sleep standing? Break things down and determine appropriate care for your creatures, then make sure your humanoids are performing those actions they need to ensure comfort for their companions.
Look. Just don’t forget you’ve got another character who has different needs. Don’t pass them off, don’t forget about them, don’t gloss over them. If you’re going to have a creature companion, you need to make sure you’re treating them like any other character and paying attention to their wants and needs the way you do for humanoids. Make sure you’re not asking them to go too far, too fast, without appropriate access to food and water. Take care of your creatures!
Pulled up after it all started to go wrong, this is how you manage a no-win scenario in the arena. I stopped recording but he walked Sportsmann out on a loose rein, everything relaxed and praising him for taking the last jump well.
a few weeks ago my friends and i were in the car on the way to the grocery store when a guy in a horse and carriage pulled up next to us in the midst of all the other traffic and we rolled down the window and asked “hey why are you in a horse and carriage” and he just paused, shrugged, and said “s’ something to do” like it was completely normal. i think about it like every day
Hello! I was wondering, what are the differences between modern HEMA and how it was used in actual combat? Mainly in how it is/was taught, the way that techniques are/were used, small battles/skirmishes and fully fledged battles. I'm currently drawing from my own experiences with HEMA (longsword) and I know it's different but I'm not sure what all of those differences are, much less how to write them. Thank you!
Honestly, the best advice I have for that is slogging through the treatises from the masters on Wikitenaur or other sites/books that let you get it direct from the horse’s mouth (as it were). If you’re not a trained scholar or used to going through language from a century ago, much less several, I can see how parsing that might be a little difficult.
The second thing to do is study the historical period in which you want to write your fiction or, if writing fantasy, whatever is adjacent. When you want to write any kind of combat scenario, studying the culture is necessary. Whether that’s one you created yourself or history itself.
You’ve got better access to the HEMA community than Starke or I do and that springboard will make it easier to find what you’re looking for. It’s important to remember that what you’re practicing right now is what we conventionally term a “dead martial art”. Like aikido and several other martial arts now enjoying a popular resurgence, the current version did not really exist in the last century. Combat in Europe moved very quickly, rapid advancement lead to many old weapons being discarded that were no longer usable. German fencing was the only form of longsword fencing to survive, and it too is weighed down by rules unnecessary to the time when the longsword was a battlefield choice. Luckily for you, because HEMA itself is so new in its reconstruction, you’re actually far closer to the source material used to revive it than you might suspect.
If you haven’t broached this subject with your instructor, you should. They might know, or know somebody who knows something that can point you in a better direction. They work with the people who work with the people who are theorizing on the past and how to bring this piece of history back to life.
The other thing you need to do is study history. One of the things we do have a lot of surviving records of are historical battles. Lots, and lots, and lots of records.
Pick your medieval historical figure. Pick a period in history. And get to work.
Also, read Sun Tzu. If there is one great historical text for understanding warfare, it’s Sun Tzu’s The Art of War.
Battles are really broken down by three groups:
I’d throw in strategy and tactics but those are under the culture header. To write battles, you need both an understanding of historical warfare and the ability to contextualize those decisions so you can have your characters make new ones. This means figuring out not just the thought processes of the people of history (theorized by gaining a better grasp of their circumstances), but also how your own characters think in relation to the world’s they live in.
Unless you’re writing historical fiction, you can’t just copy the battles from history wholesale. You have to learn how the decisions were made. This is why I recommend looking at the above groups.
Who they are as a people, their history, who they are descended from, how they see themselves, their commander’s experience with warfare, what kind of armies do they possess (if any at all), how does that work, how do they form supply lines, how do they pay for it, all that annoying bureaucratic minutia which will kill your brain but must be figured out. War is about troop movements. You’ve got to get them from Point A to Point B somehow, you’ve got ensure their fed, and if they’ve got mounts or armor all that has to come from somewhere. War is an expensive endeavor. Someone is paying for it. Where does the money come from, where does it go, and who is getting paid?
This is why strategy and tactics land under the cultural header, the more you dig into history the more you’ll find different cultures through different eras approached these problems differently. They also had different tools at their disposal which brings us to…
Technology encompasses your weapons, your armor, and, well, everything else that came to mind. Much as you need to know where your soldiers come from, you also need to know what tools they have at their disposal. If they haven’t mastered metalwork and smithing then they can’t have armor and the type of metal they work with defines what kind of armor they create. If they haven’t developed saddles then they don’t have mounted cavalry, if they haven’t figured out how to use horses to pull things then chances are they don’t have cavalry in the form of chariots either.
The same is true of the bow and every other kind of weapon available. Your tools define crucial parts of your tactics and strategy. They define what is available to use and what is available instructs us on how we fight. As the options narrow and you find your historical period, the tools will be easier to come by. Then, you’ll be able to envisage the battles better.
Warfare is complicated, but at its base is the element of rock, paper, scissors. You develop B, so I come up with X, to counter B, and then you develop Y to counter X. It is all about trying to develop new ways to counter the available options.
You brought foot soldiers to the battle, I guess this is what you’ll choose so I array my soldiers at your front and position cavalry behind to break your lines from the side or rear. You use pikes, position your soldiers in columns in order to break my cavalry’s charge or bring a cavalry of your own (or both). I position archers to bombard your lines with a barrage, and so on.
If you really have trouble with the concept then I recommend trying some good war games like Mount and Blade or the Total War series that help you see the battlefield visually and get some practice in arranging your troops.
However, in order to sell your tactics, you need…
What kind of environment are you fighting in? What is your target? What natural impediments are in the way? You can study Hannibal’s battle tactics against the Romans all you like, but if you ignore the fact that most of his elephants died on the march through the mountains then you’ll miss a crucial element to why he lost.
The conditions you fight in can make or break. Terrain defines how the troops are arranged. If you’re fighting on foreign soil then it can be the difference as to whether your tools will be of any use to you.
Some of it is flat out just luck.
The best way to learn to write battles is learning to think like a commander, and then follow that up with every other member of the army.
When it comes to historical fiction, I always recommend Sharon Kay Penman’s novels. They’re well regarded and well researched, providing some human context to what will inevitably be the dry reading of historical texts.
A/N: “Could you write about Hades!Harry??xx” I’ve never written anything like this before but i was so excited to step out of my comfort zone. I got a bit carried away so there will be a Part 2. Enjoy!
Y/n didn’t find herself in scary situations that often. Her days consisted of tending to the crops, making sure her younger siblings are fed three times a day, and treading the two hour journey to the nearest market to sell anything she possibly could for extra cash. Her routine had been this way since her parents were killed out at sea a year ago. That’s all she knows; no major details or even a chance to bid them farewell.
They left, one morning, with the intention to trade goods with villagers that resided a couple hundred miles east of the Atlantic. They promised her and her two younger brothers that they would return in a month’s time. Unfortunately, the day after they departed, Y/n received a knock at the door and an unsealed letter with no return address stating that her Mother and Father had died.
“Ship caught fire. There were no survivors, sorry for you loss”
Y/n had been only seventeen at the time, but her wisdom was well beyond her years. It was that very wisdom that allowed her to take charge of the household and become the new guardian for her brothers.
She wouldn’t call the death of her Parents ‘scary’. Incredibly tragic? Yes. But she had been raised to take on challenges when they’re thrown at her.
The girl always stood by that, even when she found herself being dragged out of bed in the middle of the night by two dark figures. She kicked, flailed and scratched every chance she got. There was no way they would take her without a fight. The brawny black figures had managed to pin her down to the bed and tie her hands behind her back with chains. She blew a stray strand of hair from her face as they picked her up and made their way towards the door. She began to wonder how she had not heard them break the door down.
'God I’m so stupid’ she thought to herself, though she knew very well that even if she had heard them break into the cottage, she would’ve ended up in the very same position.
Just before they carried her passed the boys’ room, she was able to peek in and see that they were staring back at her in sheer terror. Her heart broke. She was helpless and she knew they felt the same. It was obvious that whoever these people were, didn’t take an interest in the children and that was the only bright side she could find in this predicament.
They throw her in the back of a horse-pulled carriage, one of the men stayed in the back to make sure she didn’t escape somehow. The floor of the carriage was covered in dirt and hay, the walls of it were just high enough to hide her from anyone passing by.
The man beside her, who she could now see was wearing all black armor, proceeded to tie a cloth of some sort across her mouth to prevent any screaming.
He left her nose exposed, which gave her the idea that they wanted her alive for some reason.
Numerous hours later
The sun began to rise and she regained consciousness. She didn’t remember falling asleep but she couldn’t blame herself, she’s human. The carriage came to an abrupt halt, which caused her to hit the top of her head on the wooden barrier. “mmh!” She groaned in pain; the man that had sat with her the entire night, flashed her an unapologetic smile. A few seconds later she was being lifted once again and pulled out of the cart.
She took this opportunity to look around and try to figure out where the hell they had taken her.
It was like nothing she’d ever seen.
Before her, stood a castle, bathed in charcoal colored bricks and dressed with Gargoyles at the large, Redwood double-doors. Her feet were still bare and she couldn’t help but wince every time she stepped on a pebble. The armor clad men showed no remorse as they pushed and pulled her every which way. The doors opened slowly, almost as if the structure itself had been expecting her.
Once inside, her feet were brought relief by the cold marble flooring in the corridor; her eyes darting across the room. She spied million dollar paintings, two grand stair cases, and several stone pillars that kept the manor standing. It was hard to miss the other knight-like men who were posted at just about every corner. Without a moment to think she was, yet again, being guided rather roughly to a location that remained unknown to her. She gave up fighting a long time ago, figuring that if she kept her sanity in tact, she may be able to think up a way to save herself or find someone who can.
They dragged her up the set of stairs to the left, and through a massive hallway. The walls in this particular area were made, not of wood or stone, but of skulls. Hundreds, possibly thousands of skulls, bound together to form a wall. She wondered how they did it, and if those people had been killed for that dumb reason. Y/n couldn’t help but wonder if her head would be an addition to the foyer. After examining the enclosure, she decided to look straight ahead.
There at the end of the hallway, was another set of cherry colored doors. one door was slightly ajar and it allowed her to peek inside, the same way she did as she passed the room of her brothers not so long ago. She saw what looked to be a bed, a big one; garmented in a duvet the color of blood.
They dropped her, upon their arrival to the room. They finally removed the chains from her arms as well as the cloth from her mouth. She fell to the floor, her arms covered in bruises and welts. She turned to face the men and opened her mouth to demand answers but was cut off off by the sound of another. A deep, raspy voice; coming from somewhere in the spacious room.
“So glad you could make it”
She turned back to face the front, eyes locking with a man. He was tall and fit. He was someone she had seen before, she just couldn’t put her finger on where. “do i- hmm” she started but had stop and clear her throat, it had been hours since she had some water. “do i know you?” she asked, sheepishly. Something about his presence intimidated her.
“Yes and no” he smirked. He sauntered over to where she was sitting on the ground, rubbing at her sore arms. He crouched down to her level “you’ve probably seen me in an old carving or something of the sort” he ran his index finger across her jaw. Her eyebrows furrowed in confusion.
‘i’m Harry. Although, if we’re being cordial I should give you my real name” he sighed. “Hades, lord of the underworld”. He studied the blank expression she was giving him.
“I mean I added that bit about the underworld. Has a nice ring to it” he stated She still said nothing. “I’m not fond of it either, that’s why I make people call me Harry” he smiled before standing. She stared up at him, swallowing what moisture she had left in her dry mouth.
“oooh don’t look at me like that” he chuckled. biting his bottom lip.
She clears her throat again “Why am I here?” her voice is smaller than its ever been. Part of her hoped he didn’t hear, afraid of how he would react. “Well, doll” He breathed. “I’ve been lonely for quite some time now. I used to have a lovely wife but….let’s just say….I let my temper get the best of me one evening” he snickered. She heard the men behind her stifle their laughter as well.
“Anyways, i want another but I have standards. I’m five thousand years old, i’m not getting any younger and I know what you’re going to say ‘Harry you don’t look a day over twenty-three!’” he shrilled in a high pitched nasally voice.
“I wasn’t going to say any-”
“Shh! I haven’t finished my monologue” he interjects. She, boldly, rolled her eyes.
“Long story short, you’re a smart, headstrong, young woman. I started watching you after your parents died…sorry about that by the way it wasn’t my intention” he confessed. Her eyes widened but she was frozen in shock by what she had just heard. She waited for him to explain what he meant by that.
“I had gotten in a fight with Poseidon and it got a little out of hand I really am sorry, darling” his voice was filled with atonement. He looked back to her, searching for any sign of forgiveness. Even though was was the god of all things bad, he still possessed somewhat of a heart. She nodded, sensing a little bit of guilt in his words.
“What i’m trying to say here is, You’re my new Wife!” he declared.
I didn’t figure out that Elsewhere University was anything other than a place filled with shivery-but-ultimately-harmless traditions until I’d already started my second year.
It wasn’t anything too exciting - I stumbled into the wrong part of the library, came out and realized I hadn’t missed my afternoon classes after all. I went to class, came back to my dorm room, had a panic attack, and went on with my life. Oh, and I changed my safename. I think I ended up going through half a dozen in the next few weeks, trying to find one that didn’t actually mean anything to me. (I remember Toucan was one of them, though I think I got anxious over what if it somehow offended the crows.) Sunny was the one I stuck with that year, mostly because my TA for Intro to Statistics sat me down and told me to just pick one so he’d know who to give the assignments back to.
I already knew most of the lore by then. I’d thought it was just fun bits of knowledge, traditions and legend-building, but I’ve always collected that kind of thing. After that initial panic (having made sure the horseshoe was securely over my doorway, and stuffed salt packets in all my pockets, and turned my underwear inside-out, and written and deleted several emails to my parents) I remembered that according to everything I heard, Bio majors didn’t usually interact much with the Fae. I’d actually been disappointed by that, back when it was just a story not quite close enough to touch, but it was a comfort now. So once I’d settled on my new safename (and stopped side-eying my poor roommate), I caught up with my assignments and moved on, just a little bit more careful than before.
I fell in love with lab work that year, and on the advice of a professor shifted into the tiny Molecular Biology concentration. Elsewhere University doesn’t do much research, but there’s lab space available for fourth years doing a thesis, and you can use it earlier if you have a Prof willing to supervise and sign off for you. The Molecular Genetics professor was full of ideas for what I could do with the reagents left behind in the fridge and one big freezer, and between us we managed to get me an internship the next summer, to stay and start on my own project.
I spent those months sharing a tiny apartment in the next town over with an English major going into her fourth year. (I don’t know why she was staying for the summer. I asked, but she gave me a different answer every time - she needed to hang teardrops on the rainbow, or count crow’s teeth, or find the door out of the laundry room. After a while, I stopped asking). In the mornings she’d drive us both into the university, and in the evenings I’d either wait for her in the library (always near the front) or I’d take the single late-night bus that ran from the university to the middle of town.