Greetings to the Guild and all its members. In my position as Independent Consultant to the Guild, I have met many of you. During these encounters it has been brought home to me that many who follow the Craft are not usually on the large side in physical body. It would seem that shorter, leaner, and more compactly built bodies do better as thieves, with a lot of us being females. This being the case, we often find ourselves being pitted against the unfortunately large, strong, brutish, and even beastly types in our endeavors, especially within the Watch. Without the proper know-how on taking down a biggun this can lead to unfortunate outcomes.
Some of you may have noticed that I am not one of the larger practitioners of our Craft. This being the case, many are the times where I have faced much larger foes and come out on top, as it were. Thus I will share with you a few tips that have stood me in good stead.
First of all, try to hide in shadows and move silently whenever such threats to continued living and freedom are present. If at all possible create a distraction to aid your goal in getting clear without having to take on one of these larger foes. Setting a fire can be very helpful here. Using others as meat shields is entirely allowable, though this may be hampered by your scruples, as may the arson.
However, if one has to commit to action, then it is best to get over heavy ground as lightly as possible. Attack from behind, suddenly and fiercely (more on this in another memo), and hit low and hard, slicing just above and behind the knees, because as sure as he breathes, your big baddie has hamstrings to cut. No bipedal creature created anywhere can walk without his tendons and ligaments in working order. If he cannot stand, it gives you a very definite advantage towards winning the fight, aka incapacitating or killing him. If he cannot stand, he cannot walk, in which case, he cannot chase you. If he cannot walk, he cannot run, and so you in all likelihood get safely away.
Here there is need for great caution. Once you get him down on the ground (and he will end up there if you have truly hamstrung the poor bastich) be very careful to stay clear of his arms and hands, and any weapon of reach that he may be using. If he gets hold of you and is stronger than you are, it will be very hard to get free of him, especially once he realizes you have just ruined his ability to walk forever, unless he has access to magical healing. This realization does rather tend to send a foe into a real hissy fit of fury. Avoid his reach at all costs! No future in it, believe me.
After you have him at your mercy (or lack thereof) you can then deluge him with whatever ranged weaponry you happen to have at your disposal, be it arrows, throwing knives, stars, etc. Guns work very well at these times, too, as do vials of acid thrown on the throat or face. You may even be able to get in a good kick to his temple, thus rendering him unconscious, or kick in his ribcage, hopefully puncturing a lung, which will immediately occupy him with breathing (this is a good distraction on which I will expound in yet another memo).
Spend some time in the Library boning up on anatomy. Learn where the tendons and ligaments run inside the body structure of beings such as humans, elves, trolls, giants, etc. I guarantee they will be very similar in most cases. Go to the local morgue and study some cadavers. Doing these things helps you to envision just where to sink your blades. Practice on dummies, practice on cadavers, practice on your enemies. Practice makes muscle memory engage and settle into the reflexes of body and brain, and this is the key to surviving when you don?t have time to think.
Naturally there are times when this tactic will not work so well, or even at all. If the foe is wearing plate armor or leather armor that is banded or studded, it is much more difficult, though still not impossible, to get your blade in there for a good slice. The area behind the knee has to bend even when wearing such gear, and this being the case, it is literally a chink in the armor, as they say. It takes much more skill, however, to hit this area on your enemy when it is thus protected when you are dashing out of shadow?s embrace with little time to fuss over aiming. Precision aim is exactly what is required for success, however, and so take on this particular challenge only when you have no other choice.
A final word on this subject: Aim for both knees. One will suffice if it is all you can manage, for he will be seriously hampered in his attempts to end you. It is best, though, to get both knees at the same time, for this truly will take down even the largest and strongest of your enemies and usually allow you to flee or to slay the biggun, however your conscience may dictate.
Right then, back to work, you lot, and as always, Up the Craft!