The standard weapon of a Lower Knight is a double-edged, straight blade longsword with a crossguard, but there are many different variations. The primary weapon of a Lower Knight must have at least 30 centimeters of blade and a flat for the Aerodanar inscription to appear.
The Lower Knight's armor is usually very effective at stopping small arms fire, from either particle or solid projectile guns. Lower Knights are also able to send fire or platinum projectiles with their armor. Because of this, carrying guns isn't as effective or necessary (though it isn't unheard of).
Heavy, bludgening weapons are usually the most effective against the kinds of enemies Lower Knights face (and for sparring and training purposes between armored Lower Knights). A cutting weapon is also very useful when fighting the larger enemies and monsters of the Red Corp.
Additionally, Lower Knights usually prefer to have a hand free for performing duedamus techniques. Because of all this, a longsword (or a bastard sword) is often then the best balance for most combat situations.
Knights with different fighting backgrounds often choose different types of weapons, though. Curved sabers styled like those of ancient Natoas tradition, massive two-handed swords, and giant hammers are not uncommon.
The name for a true Lower Knight weapon is Reyna Aerodanar, which in Ancient means The Sword of Hell's Bane. It will have a red inscription appear on the flat, which appears and grows of its own accord once the sword is linked with the knight's armor. Linking is done in various ways, but this essentially means that the duedamus of the armor is syncronized with the sword. It can often happen without any sort of ritual at all.
The inscription always begins with a cross with a curving line extending from each tip. Three will spiral back toward the guard, and each represents one of the Three Dragons. The fourth, extending down the blade, represents the strength and growth of the Lower Knight. As a Lower Knight becomes better skilled with duedamus and more focused on the Father, this line will grow and branch down the blade. The inscription itself becomes somewhat of a secondary capacitor for duedamus, greatly increasing the amount of energy the sword can contain. It will glow brighter and brighter as more duedamus is compressed into it.
A Lower Knight sword (or other primary melee weapon) is able to act as a container for vast amounts of dueadmus. For a new Lower Knight, this can only be done temporarily, but with experience a knight can contain and compress the energy in the metal of the blade for extended periods of time. The duedamus fire is much easier to manipulate and control when flowing through and on the blade, requiring little to no concentration from the knight (unlike other techniques).
Lower Knight Metallurgy Edit
There are dozens of living metals that form around Elements. Many combine together to form alloys with similar characteristics to conventional alloys, but some specific combinations have characteristics unique to only living metals.
The metals that form around the Element Fires are forms of exotic matter that do not properly fit on the periodic table of elements. They are named after conventional metals that they share the most characteristics with, but in reality are wholly different and sometimes will behave in extremely different ways.
It has been extremely difficult for the physicist of Atanoah to research these exotic materials, partly because they most often appear to behave like their conventional counterparts and can be mistaken for them at times. Also, because they're formed of exotic subatomic particles, when they do act differently, they do in ways that are sometimes inconsistent.
- Living Iron: The second-most common of the living metals. This material acts the most similarly to its conventional counterpart, except that will oxidize/corrode in very obscure ways--or not at all. Despite this, it can be combined with conventional materials to form all the same alloys that conventional iron can. It has the same atomic number (proton count) as well: 26.
- Living Gold: The third-most common of the living metals. It appears like conventional gold and has the same softness, weight, and atomic number, but has significant instability issues. The metal forms in spherical crystals in the Element caverns, and until melted down or fractured (which is extremely dangerous), the crystals can explode if they receive too much of a shock (from being thrown or dropped). Why this happens is unknown, other than it seems to be a run-away conversion of the metal into deudamus flame/ionized gas.
- Living Platinum: The most common of the living metals is also one of the most unpredictable. It forms in irregular globules around Element caverns, and until it is melted down into a different shape, it can behave erratically. Chemically, it is extremely bizarre. It will physically appear like conventional platinum, but is much softer (having a hardness of 3 instead of 4-4.5). Its atomic number (proton count) is the same as Radium, (88, as opposed to platinum's 78), but it does not give off alpha, beta, or gamma radiation. The duedamus fire that forms quite easily around this member of the living metals was originally thought of to be some sort of exotic matter radiation, but the inconsistent nature of the fire made determining this difficult. The ionized state of the fire, however, made it appear to be a plasma state of the platinum. Unfortunately, the chemical properties of this flame are even more otherworldly than even the platinum.
The mixing of different living metals with innert materials is an extremely precise craft, but here are some of the basic combinations and results:
- Standard Alloy (97% living Iron + 1% carbon + 1% living platinum + 1% living gold) = feels very much like normal steel. A proper alloy will never break.
- Living lron + carbon + living platinum (about 2%) = feels lighter, faster. A proper alloy will never break.
- Living iron + carbon + living gold (about 2%) = feels heavier, strikes harder (more snap). A proper alloy will never break.
- Living aluminum + platinum = feels very very light, but less flexible and not immune to breaking.
- Living aluminum + gold = feels very fast and strong, but light. Less flexible and not immune to breaking.
- Living titanium + gold alloy = feels extremely fast and light. Same flexibility as steel, but still not immune to breaking.
It is very important for a proper smith to craft a blade, and that they use alloys that were properly formed. Imperfections in the alloy may not be known of for years or centuries, but the types of increadible pressures and beatings a Lower Knight weapon goes through can often result in swords being cut or broken if they harbor imperfections.
A rare, but effective method for making a Lower Knight weapon deals with plating either a normal steel weapon or a living steel weapon with a material often called living rust or black rust. This is actually a compound composed of living tungsten and carbon, or living tungsen carbide. It builds up on metal surfaces left near the Elements for long periods of time, and is extremely hard.
When plated on a normal steel blade, the sword can be almost as indestructable as a living steel blade. It can also contain and focus duedamus in much the same way. The finish will be a flat black can cannot ever quite be polished. The blade will hold an extremely hard edge, however.
When plated on a living steel blade, the sword will have an extremely deep, black finish, almost like obsidian. It will hold an extremely hard edge and be absolutely indestructable. The blade can be polished to an extremely high shine. Such blades are very difficult to make and the technique for applying the plating is a well-kept secret by smiths that know it. Consequently, black rust swords are extremely rare and valuable.
Setting armor pieces, removed from the wearer, in the fire of an Element for a few minutes will change their color, ranging from the natural white color to gold, to amber, to red, to black, as the pieces are set at different distances from the center of the fire. Skilled armor smiths can use special techniques to get other colors, such as green or blue, and to create special patterns on the armor.
Living rust (living tunstan carbide) can also be applied as a finish over Lower Knight armor. When applied to the seven armor pieces of a set, it will then show over all metal deployed from those pieces. It is a very, very thin finish and is the only way to truely and indefinitely dull the shine of a deployed armor suit (normal plating deployed out from each piece is initially perfect and flawless in smoothness). This "stealth" finish also blocks individuals with the ability to scan for duedamus from being able to sense the energies contained within the armor.