Country of Origin: Vodacce (the style may be learned for only 20 HP if the character already knows the Lucani School)
Salon: Gorivari (Large)
Description: Shortly after the death of Alberto Lucani, the Brevalli family found itself in dire straits. While several scions of the family had secured themselves appointments in one noble household or another, the family as a whole found its prospects severely limited. None of the other Princes trusted the Brevalli enough to bring them into their fold, and the Lucani daughters were now under the protection of the Villanova family. Without the Lucani reputation (and fortune) to back them, the Brevalli line seemed destined to fall from its once-lofty height.
Rather than allowing that to happen, a number of Brevalli duelists began hiring themselves out as high-priced mercenary bodyguards. To distinguish themselves from every other rake with a blade, they began to develop their own signature fencing style, borrowing (if not simply stealing, since no one was around to complain) from the Lucani broadsword school: the sole asset of the Lucani name which had not already been snatched up. Brevalli fencing masters modified it into a rapier style in an attempt to modernize the school and bring it into fashion, creating a potential future for themselves as fencing masters as well as personal protectors.
Many elements of the style remain unchanged from their original source. A rapier is wielded in one hand, while the other is held in a closed fist, also used to attack. It shares the aggressive, energetic character of Lucani, and Brevalli duelists are similarly quick to close with an opponent and attack from inside his or her guard.
While Brevalli shares many of Lucani’s strengths, it also suffers from that style’s main weakness. Brevalli is every bit as aggressive as its source style: it does not avoid close contact, and the drawbacks of aggressively closing with an opponent are even more pronounced when fighting with a rapier (which lacks the full cutting edge of a Lucani broadsword).
Basic Curriculum: Fencing, Pugilism
Knacks: Corps-á-Corps, Disarm (Fencing), Exploit Weakness (Brevalli), Jab, Pommel Strike (Fencing)
Apprentice: Brevalli teaches its students to attack with both sword and fist, relying on their footwork for defense. An Apprentice may make unarmed attacks (using the Attack Knack of the Pugilism Skill) with his off hand at no penalty. In addition, he receives a Free Raise to any Active Defense made using the Footwork Knack.
Journeyman: The Journeyman’s body is almost as dangerous a weapon as his rapier. He receives a free Rank of the Corps-á-Corps Knack, which may increase the Knack to Rank six. If the Rank is not increased to six at this time, the Journeyman may do so later by spending twenty-five XP. In addition, the Journeyman may now use his Exploit Weakness (Brevalli) Knack as Exploit Weakness (Lucani) when fighting against someone using that style (and vice-versa.
Master: The Master of Brevalli has learned to strike with both hands in rapid succession. He may spend one Action die to make a combination attack, which must be a Pommel Strike from the rapier (many Brevalli duelists rely on spring-mounted pommel blades to make this combination attack more effective), followed by a regular punch. These attacks are made using the Pommel Strike Knack for the initial attack, and the Jab Knack for the follow-up. The Target Number for each attack is increased by five, not ten as normal for the Jab Knack.