A picture of Gabby when I created her on The Secret World.
Yes, this a shameless plug for the video game I love.
A little over 500 years ago, a demon cursed Gabby with immortality. I know, it's weird for most to even consider it a curse, but it's not all sunshine a roses. She can die, in fact she has died a lot, but she is ressurected. The only way she knows to end her curse is to kill the demon who cast it. So, she has spent her long life learning to hunt demons. Her preferred fighting style is
Also called Kali or Arnis, Eskrima is a martial arts of the Philippine Islands. Most people relate it to stick fighting, but it includes a wide range of weapons including knives, swords and improvised weapons. Don't worry, it also teaches to fight hand to hand if you are caught without a weapon.
A pair of rattan sticks.
It is hard to say what the early history of Eskrima was since most was handed down via oral tradition. The Visaysas (Central Philippines) were considered the cradle of Eskrima. The first recorded reference to the art of Eskrima was on Mactan Island in 1521. The chieftain Lapu Lapu and his men defeated a group of Spanish conquistadors. Ferdinand Magellan, who lead the expedition, lost his life in the battle.
Eventually, the Spanish did conquer the Philippines and outlawed the fighting style and the carrying of bladed weapons. The Eskrima Maestros (Masters) took their fighting styles underground and trained with rattan sticks instead of swords.
Gabby sought out a master during the late 1500's to teach her espada y daga (sword and dagger). The Filipinos modified the Spanish fencing style to create an effective close range fighting. The Spanish kept a dagger at their hip to use as a back up weapon. They preferred to keep the fight at long range with a fencing sword and use the dagger for blocking or parrying. Espada y daga Eskrima changed this to hold the dagger behind the sword. This allowed more maneuverability and deceptiveness.
There are many types of weapons used in Eskrima. The swords alone has a wide range. Gabby's demon slaying sword is a Sundang. This is a type of Kris blade. Hers was created by a family of demon slayers gifted by Hindu goddess Durga. The family died out long ago but their legacy was left behind for Gabby to search out.
If you are a writer, do you add any certain fighting styles of weapons? As a reader, do you have any fighting styles or weapons you'd like to see in novels?