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A tale of martial arts to come?

Imagine a world in which war of unimaginable magnitude has reduced the world to a mixture of primitive culture and superstition, using artifacts from the golden age of technology.

A man called Geedohg walked this world, searching for those who wished to follow a path of physical, mental and spiritual development. He followed the coast, watching sea through the morning mists through which rose a blood red sun and sometimes ventured up into the mountains, climbing through densely wooded slopes over boulders the size of houses knocked from the summits in bygone times by titanic forces of destruction.

On one of these sojourns into the hills he came upon the fabled city of Mun. This, like many places, had been destroyed but there were a few buildings remaining. One was a cube measuring 50 metres on each face but with no obvious means to enter it. Geedohg was fascinated by this structure and meditated upon what it might contain, and how to enter it. The meditation lasted 3 days. On the third day he was disturbed by another man who asked him why he was meditating. In the following conversation the newcomer, who was a historian, told Geedohg that the bock was what had, in the golden age, been a sculpture and that it was solid and there could be no way in to something that was not a space. Geedohg considered this to be a profound statement and asked the stranger to accompany him.

They wandered together for months discussing philosophy, which was the forte of the newcomer, and Geedohg taught him the rudiments of movement and some fighting skills. During their travels they came across the remains of another city which had been reduced to a lake of glass. Over this they saw a man jumping up and down on one leg. Their curiosity was aroused and they approached the man and enquired why he was engaged in such an apparently pointless activity. The man explained that his leg was weak and he was attempting to strengthen it by exercise. He heard about the travels of the two companions and asked if he might join them in their search for mental and physical strength. The two companions welcomed him to join them.

Their journey took them to the coast, the wind was blowing onshore and, in the shelter of a group of rocks, they encountered a man boiling a kettle of tea. The travellers were hailed by this man and invited to join him in a brew. This was greatly welcome and the conversation came around to the search of the three companions. The newcomer turned out to interested in matters spiritual and ways to fight. He had set up a rudimentary home in a cave and had fashioned a variety of implements to make life easier including a fireplace for when it was cold and a fan on a long pole for when it was hot. The travellers were invited to share his home for a while and, being weary of their travels, they gladly agreed. During the following weeks they shared their knowledge on matters mental, spiritual and martial. The man by the sea demonstrated the use of some of his domestic implements as means of protecting himself, including the fan which had a heavy end and could be used to bludgeon things very effectively. The others shared their experience and knowledge with him.

After a few weeks another man arrived. He was of strange appearance, his hair being matted into many strands which the historian identified as dreadlocks. He, like the others, was offered the opportunity to join up with the little band. He was a bit reluctant at first in that he did not consider that he had anything to offer but, when it emerged that he had a tremendous ability to make the most marvellous food from almost anything, he was welcomed with open arms. He then realised that he could make a contribution to the party and became the chef, spending much time in the kitchen.

Other than Geedohg, none of the others had names and they realised that with this number in the party, it would be confusing if everyone was referred to as 'oi you'. So they decided to give themselves names. Geedohg, who being the only one with a name was considered to be the expert, was asked to think of names for the others. He considered the matter deeply and meditated for many days. Eventually the names were chosen. Geedohg explained why he had chosen the names for each of the party; Geedohg looked at his first companion and said "You I met in the city of Mun and what you said to me was the first key I had to this journey. I will call you Mun-Key". Looking at the second he said, "You I found on a lake of glass, hopping up and down. I will call you Glass-Hopper". Looking at the third of his companions he said, "You I found brewing tea, on the seashore in the lea of a rock. I will call you Brew-Sea-Lea". Geedohg finally turned to the latest arrival and said, "You came to us. You are from a far off tribe and you most likely to be found cooking, I will call you Jah-Kitchen". Brew-Sea-Lea, who was the only one of the companions with a fan-club, then said to Geedohg, "You have named us all, but although you already have a name you have no title, I have consulted with Mun-Key, the historian, and he tells me that the leaders in the old days were sometimes called Shah." And that is the story of Shah Geedohg.

Sandy Robertson 1995