Rune Fencers: Adoulin's Protectors of the Faith

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Lightness of step is but a trifle for masters of the elements.

Let ye who face foe exploit his weaknesses through the blessings of the elements.

Victory is nigh when ye see through a rival as one does a pane of glass.

Should these covenants remain unbroken, the runes will guide ye to certain triumphs.

―From An Introduction to the Runic Arts, a treatise by Octavien.

Rune fencers conjure an ancient elemental script that harbors primeval forces―and bend them to their very will. They call forth the latent potential bubbling just beneath the ink, turning it into either tempestuous blades that carve the flesh of foes or ethereal shields that protect the meek. This delicate balance between fury and virtue is the hallmark of runeology, and those walking down its path must heed this accord if they are to become masters of the craft.

Sverdhried, the Rune Fencer


Thou shalt sing in praise of the light.

This bright glance of divinity which doth deign to shine upon our mortal countenance,

This shining wave of grace which doth deign to embrace us and illuminate the darkness,

Let it pour through thy skin and fill thy soul with clarity.

Thou shalt sing in praise of the light.

―Excerpt from the introduction to "Lux" in The Complete Glossary of Runes.

Far to the north lie the ruins of an ancient kingdom whose name is lost to the annals of time. In centuries long past, Sverdhried, a swordsman of little renown, made the dangerous trek to the northern reaches simply "because no one's been there before." He chose to study with the magisters of this desolate land, attempting in vain to blend in with the populace. His thirst for knowledge was initially flippant in nature, yet the runes beckoned to him not hours after he first set foot on the frozen grounds. The magisters chided him for his reckless naivety―understanding runes takes years and years of monastic training!―yet he remained undeterred in his quest. They laughed at his brashness, expecting him to yield before he could even write the most basic rune, "Ignis," let alone begin to master the intricacies of the whole script. Yet Sverdhried persisted, shocking all with the way his quill rose and fell as the runes danced upon canvas after a few short months. His aptitude confounded even the most learned of scholars, who could do naught but stand agape at his seemingly limitless potential.
Several years later, Sverdhried had full command of the entire runic alphabet. Yet he was not content to take his place among the masters. While his students sang his praises far and wide, his sword―left untouched for many months―desperately cried out for him. Heeding the call to arms one day as the cold wind bit his flesh, he drew his weapon and called forth the power of Ignis. In that instant, his blade shone forth with a crimson light, the hilt searing into his hands. Icicles on a nearby pine tree began to melt, forming puddles of water on the tips of his boots. His master let out an abrupt gasp―the steam spiraling forth from the steel's tip was born not from the energies of a Red Mage, but the powers of the runes manifesting themselves in steel.

With his goals achieved, Sverdhried left Rhazowa to return to his homeland. Though many magisters attempted to replicate his successes, none could hold a candle to his innate prowess.

Rune Fencing―the Ultimataru Form of Swordplay


Asky-wask if you don't understand.
Keep on fightaruing until you've experienced it firsthand

Runic ener-wenergy lies within the soul,
While swordsmanship skills are physical manifestations of strength.

Daily training-waining leads to greataru progress.

Inventions and insight are tools of the future!

From Amchuchu's addendum to The Order of Orvail Family Precepts.

The Order of Orvail, managers of the Inventors' Coalition, are the safekeepers of the mystical blade said to have been wielded by Sverdhried himself. Many long days and nights were spent sharpening its edges, refining its grip, and enhancing its potential as a magical conduit, until it was finally able to harbor three runes at a time. Further uses for Sverdhried's runic magic were studied and conceived throughout the years, finally manifesting themselves as "wards," which confer elemental protection upon the engraver, and "effusions," which expend the power of the runes to create a burst of magical energy.

Though even Sverdhried had to spend half a decade learning the runic arts, those swearing allegiance to Orvail in recent years have concocted a method of mastering their mysteries in mere weeks. Of course, such training brings with it risks of its own.

This training involves the carving of runes into one's very flesh in tandem with the mastering of mystic algorithms tested through deductive presentation. Conquering both the physical and intellectual aspects of this regimen is vital to walking the path of runes and eventually declaring oneself a rune fencer.

Illustration: Mitsuhiro Arita

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