Dirty fighting is the only kind there is, Fraser had told him, panting, as they knelt at the stream and splashed cold water over sweating faces. Anything else is no but exhibition.
His head jerked on his neck and he blinked, coming back abruptly from the grate and crash of wooden swords to the dim warmth of the cabin. The platter was gone; Brianna was cursing softly under her breath at the sideboard, banging the hilt of his dirk against the blackened lumps of clay-baked quail to crack them open.
Watch your footing. Back, back — aye, now, come back at me! No, dinna reach so far…keep your guard up!
And the stinging whap! of the springy “blade” across arms and thighs and shoulders, the solid thunk of it driven bruising home between his ribs, sunk deep and breathless in his belly. Had it been cold steel, he would have been dead in minutes, cut to bleeding ribbons.
Don’t catch the blade on yours — throw it off. Beat, beat it off! Come at me, thrust! Keep it close, keep it close…aye, good…ha!
His elbow slipped and his head fell. He jerked upright, barely keeping hold of the sleeping child, and blinked, vision swimming with firelight.
Diana Gabaldon, The Fiery Cross (Chapter 87 – En Garde)