Capua is a rich a bountiful city, bustling with life and harbouring death.
The most upper class homes are built with facilities for human conflict.
Slaves, prisoners or men who volunteer, train to become gladiators. Each win in the arena accumulates coin. Coin can be put towards whores, wine, freedom or rare trinkets.
The Dominus of the Ludis is the Master of the home, joined by his beautiful wife, the Domina served by pure hand maidens dressed simply and bearing a sacred nark, tying them to their Mistress. The Gladiators, upon completion of training, bear the mark of the House Name. Many strive to do the house proud by facing opponents in the arena, others strive for freedom and others for blood.
Fully fledged gladiators live in single accommodation. These stone rooms a single bed with blankets. The Gladiators in these rooms have earned status and approval from the Dominus and Doctori . They may have candles and religious idols in their rooms, nothing else.
Gladiators that please the crowds and their House, are rewarded with more coin and privileges.
They train every day in the sun, some occasionally escort the Dominus around the city and markets as a guard against possible thievery or murder.
Wooden swords are used for practice, real blades are used for events at the House and the arena.
Gladiators are permitted to have whores at celebrations.
The Domina employs three hand maidens. They are pure and innocent, untouched by men. They bathe Domina, serve her and any guests fully and are highly regarded and should they ever be sold on, would fetch a very high price.
Hand maidens are not permitted to sleep with any man unless the Domina selects a suitable man for her to marry, these are usually very high standing men. These women live in the House above the Ludis and often run errands around the house for the Domina.
The House is in high standing, for the moment. A large selection of incredible Gladiators and a Dominus that is highly sought after for social events. The Gladiators have sworn all loyalty to the House and its Dominus but as time goes on, the Houses character falls apart and dark deeds are revealed, talk of mutiny springs from the cracks as the servants and gladiators realize they are all pawns in the Houses game and their Domina and Dominus are nothing but murderers and black hearted demons.
Capua awaits for the games to begin.
Quality over quantity but I despise one liners so try and add some meat to your posts
There will no doubt be graphic content such as violence and sexual references and expletive language, so don't join if you're faint of heart
I am looking for a male gladiator.
Tasia still couldn’t see what he saw when it came to Doctori and honestly, he was the last man on Earth she wanted to think about right then. She rested her hand on his shoulder, letting the silence linger but it was not an uncomfortable one. It was serene, almost and all she wanted to do was fall into his arms and be with him, to just enjoy the moment like so many couples did but it seemed it was not for them. And there was no guarantee they would make it out together alive past the walls. It could all go horribly wrong at any given minute, either of them could stricken from this world.
Tasia has found a home with Caius. She didn’t care if they slept bare outside in the elements as long as it was with him. The latest rumours were Spartacus had taken over a walled city, housing his army of slaves and Tasia thought if they could make it there then they had some sort of chance. All she knew is that she didn’t want to leave Caius’ side, even for a moment but she knew that it would only be stolen moments.
“Of course, Caius. Only you.” She spoke quietly. She half expected him to disintegrate before her, like the shards of a dream falling apart.
“I would only ask that throughout all of this, that you’ll just live. You’ll survive, regardless of whatever is thrown at us.” She said to him, her eyes searching him. The house was silent, everyone seemed to have retired for the night. Most of the lantern torches were out and Tasia could have stayed with Caius in this moment until dawn forced them apart. He still had to train in the morning.
“You should rest.” She whispered softly, letting her hands fall to her lap.
“If you’re right about Doctori then I dread to think what he will put you through tomorrow.” She murmured and she was worried what would happen to Caius. She was safe under Domina - at least that’s what she thought.
It was funny to him that Tasia could not see it but then perhaps it was because he was on the outside and observing his behaviours towards her. If he didn’t have feeling for her he definitely felt as though he has some kind of control over her. It was so strange to hear Tasia speak so lowly of herself especially when he felt as though she was worth ten thousand of Domina.
Caius laughed softly and nodded when she spoke of Doctori. “It’s true I assure you.” He said as he watched her demeanour change to something more surprising. She really did not have much self esteem.
“Yes you Tasia. I know how many women there will be on the outside but I cannot envision any woman to have any measure on you.” There was a silence between them for a moment until she started to speak again. The words that found him made his heartbeat begin race and his mouth started to dry. He never expected to hear someone say that they might want him.
“Tasia you are the most beautiful and precious thing I have ever laid eyes upon and I would trade anything if it meant that we could be together without any danger coming to you.” His skin felt hot underneath her touch and it took everything within him to not lean into her touch and close his eyes and simply enjoy the feel of her touching him. “When we get out of this mess, we may be free to be with each other if that is what you want.”
Tasia smiles a little to Caius as he sat with her, shifting so he had room. She looked to the dice and honestly, she still didn’t get the game at all but the old man had been far too nice to pester about rules. She listened to him and raised an eyebrow,
“Doctori? Jealous? I hardly think so. He can marry a woman of status, all those fancy ladies, no less.” She scoffed, not even remotely believing it. It would be... weird. She had looked up to him as a father most of her life, he had been a grown man when she had first come here. Although she would heed his warning and pay careful attention to Doctori’s attitude towards her.
It seemed a foreign concept that Caius actually wanted to stay with her, she knew how deep connections ran with gladiators and friends.
“Me?” She stared at him, mingled with confusion and shock.
“Do you understand how many women will be on the outside?” She asked him, she was sure she only seemed appealing because he didn’t exactly have much choice.
“I would have you in a heartbeat, Caius, if it didn’t risk your very life. I am not experienced with men and love and all the emotions in between but I am clever enough to understand when someone- when I enjoy someone.” She murmured. If Docotri was jealous then they could be playing a very dangerous game. Domina and Dominus were one flame, Doctori was another heat altogether. He could make Caius’ life a misery. He could force him to train to point of exhaustion, until his hands bled and sweat threatened to drown him. She could not stand by and watch that.
Tasia watched Caius, he was so difficult to read. She reached up when she was sure they were alone and touched his cheek, running her thumb gently over it.
“You don’t seem real.” She said quietly, he was if the Gods themselves had descended to give her everything that missing from her. And it was a cruel twist that for now, they couldn’t ever be together. In another life they may have been more lucky, they may have lived together never knowing everything they would be missing, but here even a touch was a crime, even a word.
Caius had his suspicions about Doctori and the way he felt about Tasia and he couldn’t help but wonder if she knew. A man who was acting as a father figure would not be so angry about taking her time. Perhaps he was scared that Tasia might have feelings for Caius rather than him. It seemed so unimportant but if men did not have power themselves they would often try to assert their authority over women. It annoyed him really, that men who were slaves would often make slaves out of their women without really realising it. He shook his head as he walked away and started to make his way towards Tasia who was being told how to the play the game before her.
It was not exactly a simple game but it was humorous to watch but it seemed that he came at the time the game finished. He nodded towards the gladiators as they left, leaving Caius and Tasia alone once more. He lowered himself into a chair next to her and looked towards her with kindness in his eyes.
“Everything is fine. I think that Doctori is jealous of the time we have spent alone.” He let out a sigh and locked her eyes with her own as she spoke. “You are not intruding on anything at all. However I do believe Doctori believes I am the one interfering with something. You realise he has feelings for you don’t you?” He asked with a raised eyebrow and smirk upon his face. He looked away momentarily while he thought about what she had said about the future when they got out of here.
“I do not feel chained to you. I promised your brother I would protect you because I [i want] to. I want to be tied to you Tasia...if you will have be that is?”
Doctori eyes Caius,
“I hope you know what you’re doing, for her sake, not just yours.” He muttered before taking his leave to his own private chambers. He was riled up, that much was evident. He had openly looked after Tasia and here the two of them stood, he was an older man and he knew -or at least he thought he knew- what was going on. He disappeared into the shadows. His intent was clear now, in his mind. He would ask Domina to take Tasia. It would be a hard sell but Doctori had been a member of the house for many years.
Tasia looked to Caius, she had noticed Doctori’s sharp departure and it was evident whatever was said was not a friendly conversation between them.
[i “See you have to make sure the dice rolls- Ah! Caius!”] The older man sitting with Tasia greeted,
[i “You’re not here to play dice.”] He remarked with a smile. There was a definite comrade-ship between the gladiators and Tasia knew they looked out for each other but there had been a shift, almost as if it was closer since talk of mutiny.
[i “Well, that’ll be me spent. Got to save enough to keep a pretty woman happy.”] The older man chuckled and went to find whatever whore took his fancy for the evening. Tasia watched him go, before looking to Caius, having warmed up.
“Is everything alright?” She asked him, nodding to where Doctori had left.
“I have seen Doctori angry before, I don’t think he’s pleased.” She said and took a drink of water. It seemed she was doing much better in the presence of others, like she could forget momentarily what had happened. Perhaps she was getting ahead of herself and perhaps she was just confused and there were so many emotions... not only with Caius but for her brother and Docotri’s betrayal. The world outside was probably full of interesting people, people Caius and maybe even herself would latch onto. It was unfair to have Caius think he would need to be stuck with her out of obligation for her brother. When they were free, she would free Caius from any promise he felt he had to keep.
The number of gladiators had thinned out, for the most part. Most of them taking women to bed or simply partaking of too much wine. Tasia could hear the main house we’re enjoying guests once again and wondered how many parties and events one house could hold before it got boring. She sighed quietly to herself, arms wrapped protectively around herself,
“I don’t want to intrude on any ‘celebrations’ you have planned.” Of course returning to her chamber and solitude was no option but she was sure she could find something to do. The Medicus chamber always needed tidying or sorting out. With all the training, it was a wonder Caius was not exhausted. The next games were setting in quickly and she was worried their plan would not happen before the next games. No man wasn’t indestructible and she knew she would not be able to bear such a thing if Caius didn’t return. She was putting off sleep, for fear of what nightmares would come. She couldn’t pray this away, feeling like it wasn’t punishment for not asking more questions about Taos.
“Caius-“ she cut off and looked to him, pausing for a moment. “I don’t want you think you have to do all of this out of obligation. My brother wouldn’t want anyone tied down for his sake so... when we get free.... if you want to explore or travel then, you will be free. I would not see you free from chains of the house only to be shackled down by another chain.”
The closeness took him by surprise. His actions might have led her to believe that he perhaps wanted something more than friendship from her but at this time only that was possible and even that was forbidden in some respects because of who they both were. However, he could not deny that having her arms around his neck in such away felt like a comfort he did not realise that he needed. He allowed his arms to close around her gently so that he did not make her feel uncomfortable or squeeze her too tightly.
“You have nothing to thank me for.” He said just as she pulled away. He did not need to turn around to realise that someone was there. Part of his training meant that he could detect when there was a presence nearby, but he could tell that it was Doctori by the look on Tasia’s face. She night not forgive him so easily, but it seemed as though he expected her to. Caius smiled down at Tasia and nodded to let her know that it was okay to leave them. He watched as she moved to take a seat next to the nearby game and he eyed Doctori carefully.
“You make it sound as though I told her simply to get her to distrust you. I told her because she deserved to know, and she should have been told from the very beginning. She would have understood, she would have kept quiet, but you chose to keep it from her. You only have yourself to blame. Let people whisper. They know nothing of what they are talking about. People cannot pretend to know what exists between us. I promise Taos that I would take care of her and that it what I am doing.”
Caius sighed as he listened to Doctori speak and assume things about their relationship. “Goodnight Doctori.” He said with his eyebrow raised, waiting for him to leave and shook his head and looked over towards Tasia who had been watching them carefully.
Tasia looked up at Caius and sighed softly. She must have looked so weak to him and she was fully aware that on her own outside these walls, there were worse people and men who could easily overpower such a wisp of a woman. She had not expected Caius to stay with her but it came as some sort of relief when he said he would. He flattered her, honestly. She gazed at him with curious eyes, she could see why Taos had befriended him now, before she had thought of him as just another gladiator who killed to make gold. She now knew this was not the case and that he was a man. A white giggled past them with a drunk man in tow who could barely walk and Tasia raised an eyebrow.
Before even thinking, the woman wrapped her arms around Caius neck in an embrace, it was fleeting for fear of being caught by someone but the closeness was there. His body was warmer than hers but the chill had gone from her flesh.
“Thank you, Caius.” She said quietly and quickly took a step back from him as Doctori rounded the corner.
“The two of you will freeze together out here.” He remarked, looking over them both.
“Tasia, see yourself to water, the gladiators will not touch you.” He motioned into the inside of the Ludis where it was at least warm and out of earshot. Tasia looked to Caius warily before nodding at the instruction, wanting out of Doctori’s presence. She remained wary as she sat by one of the much older men and watched their game, trying to figure out how exactly it was played. She was noticeably on edge, not exactly comfortable in a group of men.
“You told her.” Doctori looked to Caius, “And now she despises me and cops over you.” He stated, not quite understanding there were other factors at play. He glanced over to Tasia who was watching them both, she may not have been a fighter but she was not afraid of breaking up the conversation at any moment.
“You both endanger your lives, whispers have started about how much you see of each other. I know the talk of mutiny but there will be none if you and her are executed. And I will not watch Tasia executed as her brother was.” He grumbled and shook his head.
“If you seek private moment, then ask and it shall be arranged. The guards drink tonight and so their minds are riddled with wine but it will not be like that constantly. Enjoy tonight, but tomorrow you must be safer.” He warned the gladiator. Doctori looked to Tasia, she was young and had a lot to look forwards to should she make it out of the walls alive, and Caius was a genuine man, fierce and true to his word and Doctori could think of no one better to watch over Tasia, but it had to stop there. Perhaps there was a jealousy in Doctori’s eyes, that another grew so close to Tasia, Tasia had thought of Doctori like w father, even an older brother but never a lover. Doctori couldn’t say the same. And he was of status to take a woman, he needed only to convince Domina.
Tasia was going to make herself sick if she continued to stand out in the cold observing the gladiators like her life depended on it. It was obvious that she was still hurting and that would not go away anytime soon but that did not mean that she needed to make herself ill. Caius did not want to lose her too and he would do anything in his power to make sure that he didn’t. He was charged with taking care of her and he promised himself that he would do a better job of that from now on.
“I won’t let you be alone but I cannot let you stand out here and freeze Tasia.” He moved her into a doorway so he could shield her from the cold wind that would potentially threaten her with an illness. He let out a deep sigh and turned towards her to notice that she was watching him intently, thanking him for telling him the truth about Taos. He did not exactly have a choice. In his mind, he would have always told her the truth it was what she deserved. He had not expected her to consider his feelings about the matter but he simply nodded when she mentioned how he must be feeling.
“All that matters now is that we finish what he started. He was trying to free you and now that’s my job. It doesn’t matter what you have on the outside because you have me. I have no family out there and I have no where to go so as far as I am concerned we are in this together even when we get out of here.” He smiled softly and ran his hand over her face, noticing that the bruising had gone down.
“I will never allow you to be alone again.” He did not laugh when she asked if he could teach her to fight. “I will teach you to fight. Whenever you are ready just say the word.” He chewed on the inside of his lip a minute before looking at her again. “You are so strong. Stronger than you know I believe.”
It was strange to see the gladiators acting like normal men, well, at least for the most part. They were free to drink, to take a whore if they wished and to gamble and play games. Some of the smiles were genuine and it was such a rare sight in this place. There was laughter and songs, Tasia didn’t recognise all of the songs because most were from different lands. She felt a warm hand take her cold arm and she looked up at Caius, blinking as if confused.
“I’m watching. My chamber is still a mess.” She remarked quietly, “And I- I didn’t want to be alone, not tonight.” She remarked quietly. Caius was hot to the touch but it looked like he had been training. She didn’t feel the cold too much,
“Please, Caius. I do not want to sit in a room with only my thoughts.” She said to him, almost like a child. “It’s busy here, there’s so much going on it keeps me distracted.” She begged him not to take her to peace and quiet or leave her alone. She was scared what could happen.
She was too tired to fight as she let him lead her towards warmth and she watched him,
“Thank you, for telling me about Taos.” She murmured and glanced around warily, “And he was your friend too, news must have been hard for you as well.” She looked him over. She felt ashamed to be like this in front of him, tired and aching all over with her heart in a million pieces and her mind shattered. She thought for a while, she had never wanted vengeance more than in that moment and she would take it, regardless of what others thought of her.
“I have nothing outside these walls now.” She said to him,
“Except memories and a village burned to the ground. Teach me to fight.” She said to him, eyes meeting his.
“Teach me to fight, I will go to Spartacus’ army after this.” It seemed the woman was terrified of being alone and Caius was the only being she trusted right then completely. She met his gaze with her pale eyes steadily, this much she was clear about.
“I don’t want to be alone, Caius. And wait my family and homeland gone, I have nowhere.” She said to him,
“So I ask you as a friend, teach me to fight after all this, so I might try to find a place where I belong.” She did not know his plans and if they had different plans and he wished to go another direction it would kill her to see him leave because he had been as a guardian angel to her, genuine and soft when needed. They would see through his plan and then see where their feet took them but she wanted to be able to fight and to find a home, anywhere. Although the more time she spent watching him, the more he reminded her of a home.
Caius had no use here helping Tasia calm down since he had been the cause of her distress but he would likely be more helpful by warding off those who were asking questions, settling their minds so that they did not talk about what had happened in case people tried to guess what might have happened. Guessing usually led to rumours being started that were not true and if anyone had seen them come out of the stables they might assume that they were in a secret relationship. So he decided to keep his distance for her protection. All it would take would be one speculation and they could both be executed for the wrong thing.
Instead, he decided to occupy himself with training, finding a quieter spot on the grounds to ensure that he kept himself at a distance. Many of the other gladiators had seemed to have forgotten about what had happened and were now occupying themselves with social things and whores. Perhaps he would be less suspicious to people if he took a woman himself but that was not going to happen. In this world he lived in, he did not need a whore, he needed a partner and he was not of a social standing to take one. Even if he was, there was no one he would be allowed to take as many of the women here were out of bounds and he could not exactly meet anyone easily in his line of work.
He trained harder than normal so that he could get all of his anger out. Every single muscle ached by the time he was finished and he was no longer able to feel the bitter cold of the cool air that surrounded him. Caius breathlessly made his way back towards his chambers but stopped still when he caught sight of Tasia catching her death in the cold.
“Tasia, what are you doing?” He asked with concern and took hold of her arm gently so that he could lead her towards warmth.
Tasia didn’t pay any attention to anything that happened, the guards could have done what they like and she would never have stopped them. It took some moments for her breathing to level out and stop being pained gasps but somehow she did it. The cut on her arm trickled blood slowly, not a grievous wound but one the Medicus would need to look at. Caius’ words to the guard sounded so far away and her head was spinning as she stood up, using the wall for balance. She didn’t seem to look at anything or anyone, but there was a fierce anger in her eyes. She didn’t speak, she didn’t even look at anyone as she walked.
Tasia made her way to the Medicus, stumbling slightly. Medicus asked no questions about the incident but was a lot gentler than he was with the gladiators.
“What happened?” He finally asked as he cleaned the wound out with salt water.
“I finally found the truth of my brothers death.” She stated.
“Doctori told you then?” Medicus assumed but something ticked in Tasia’s Head. Doctori had lied to her, he had said he had seen Taos fall in the arena. The Medicus wrapped a delicate cloth around her arm,
“You’ll live.” He murmured and let Tasia stand, inspecting the bandage on her arm made from old cloth.
“Tasia-“ Doctori has wanted to explain but Tasia’s look cut him off.
“You kept this from me, all this time. And I had to hear it from Caius.” She said, her voice shaking as net Doctori’s gaze.
“They would have killed you too.” He said. “And Caius draws too close for comfort.” He added with an icy edge. Caius should never have told but he was doing his best to pick up the broken pieces and where was Caius? He should have been doing this considering he caused the mess.
Tasia sighed, she didn’t even want to look at Doctori,
“Caius is a friend. Anything more and he would have stopped me from wrecking my room or he would be here now, perhaps even comforted me in my rooon. And you have lost status to tell me what to do.” She muttered.
“I am not a scared child anymore, I am a woman and I will take the blood owed to me when the time is right. And I will thank Caius for being honest with me.” She snapped and left the chamber, her room was still a mess and so she sat on the stairs, watching gladiators gamble and drink rich wine.
Her shoulders caught a chill from the breeze but she didn’t move from her spot, it was safe here, she could see everything from her shadowed spot. Her room would be silent and alone and right that moment she wasn’t ready to face her thoughts alone. She watched a few gladiators play some sort of gambling game with old dice and drink. Others were escorting whores back to their room. She wiped her face, trying to retain her dignity and watched for Caius, she needed to thank him. Tasia drew her arms around herself, keeping in whatever heat she could and a gladiator motioned her to come sit with them to keep cold at bay but Tasia did not know him that well. A passing gladiator pressed water into her hand and gave a small nod, knowing the woman must haven grieved somehow as he settled at his gambling game. Tasia averted her gaze and instead looked down at the water in her cup. Her white dress had flecks of blood over it from her arm previously. She looked exhausted but she knew sleep would only bring nightmares. The bruising on her face from the bold guard was starting fade now, but served as a bitter reminder that they were all still under command.
Even though Caius could tell that she was not taking this news lightly he did not regret telling her. Family deserved to know what happened to family and Caius would give anything to know one thing about his own family. He noticed the way that her body started to shake and how her pink cheeks drained of colour yet he held his gaze upon her, giving her the time she needed to process her thoughts.
He was no longer holding on to her hand as she rose from her seated position and put some distance between the two of them. He felt empathy for her but he was not sorry. He wanted to take her in his arms and allow her to let out all of the emotion she wanted to but he kept his distance, knowing that could make her feel weak and she was not that. Emotion made you strong, not weak, regardless of what he had been taught in the arena.
When her red eyes met his, he really had to hold himself back from saying anything but even before he could she excused herself and left him sat there in the silence of the stables. He let out a long breath; one he had not realised he had been holding and brought his hand up to his face as if to wipe away the annoyance and anger he felt about the situation. At one point he might have shown mercy but to see Tasia like that, mercy was the last thing on his mind.
He waited for a moment before gathering himself off the bench and moved out of the stables to see that those who had been training were beginning to gather. Maybe he had made a mistake telling her here and now. It drew attention to her and that could give their plan away or even make it look suspicious because he had been the last one to talk to her. Caius moved swiftly towards the scene and watched as the guards started to near her.
“Leave her. She is causing no harm.” He said and threw them an almost threatening look. They seemed to accept his warning and backed off for the moment as he moved towards the other gladiators. “Do you not have training to do? Get to it.” He said harshly.
Tasia was stunned, she did not speak for a long time. This was a cruel joke, surely? She searched his face to find any trace of twisted joke but found nothing, just stoic seriousness. She felt a lump in her throat, sickness rising and her blood had turned to ice. Part of her had always known something was wrong but... not this. She couldn’t believe her ears, she couldn’t even believe Caius. She was shaking, ever so slightly.
“I-...” she didn’t know what to say. Her brother had died on a road, alone and cold. She knew if she was there she would have joined him in the afterlife sooner than see him be murdered. She felt tears sting her eyes, threatening to overflow the fragile breach. She wasn’t sure what to believe anymore as she stood and out distance between Caius and herself.
“I could have shown them all mercy.” She whispered quietly, “But-“ she couldn’t form a proper sentence, it seemed.
She realised how she must have looked. Weak and pathetic. She looked to Caius,
“You- you have to train.” She excused herself in a flurry of her white dress, barely avoiding the gladiators that jostled in their sparring. Doctori looked to her and saw the look on her terrified and saddened features and he looked towards the stables, Caius must have told her.
Tasia moves to her private chamber behind the Medicus chamber and fell to her knees, as is isolation brought some form of protection. She learnt against the wall and looked to the kit candle by her bed.
“I’m sorry.” She whispered over and over. All these months and years she had envisioned Taos in the arena and all the while he had been murdered in cold blood for wanting to free them both.
“You foolish man- to ask such a thing.” Devastation turned to anger as she tipped the water in her room with a loud clattering, sending water and smashed pieces of vase shattering everywhere.
Guards looked over at the commotion and Doctori pressed them to stay out as he went towards Tasia’s chambers to see her sitting in ruin, evidently having taken all her fury out in the bed bed and water and shelves. Doctori knee he could not comfort the crumpled woman who sat sobbing against the wall, she was breathing shakily and Doctori had never seen like this but something told him it wasn’t just grief for a murdered brother, it was anger and betrayal and guilt. She had cut her arm on something and Doctori looked to the gladiators who had gathered nearby, murmuring and whispering. The guards looked less impressed, shifting to perhaps remove Tasia. Doctori signalled to them to stand down.
He made note of potential getting more help from Medicus but he didn’t want to include too many people in this plan. Having lots of people in on it made it more likely to fail in his eyes but he might have to swallow his pride at some point so that he could ensure that his plan worked properly.
If this moment between them was any less serious he might have laughed at the impatience in her words and her eyes. Now was not the time for humour though. This could potentially hurt her and she wanted to be there for her through it. “It turns out that Taos was not killed in the arena like we were led to believe. He was saving his gold. Every fight that he had he avoided the whores and the gambling that some of the gladiators partake in. He had saved enough to buy his freedom; to buy your freedom.” He took a bit of a break and tried to ensure that his voice was not harsh. “He made the mistake of approaching the house to ask if he could buy your freedoms and he was promised that he would think about it, except they have not been known to keep their promises.” He closed his eyes as the image of him being killed crossed his mind. “They ambushed him on the road on the way back from the arena and executed him for daring to ask for a chance.” He sighed and allowed his hand to find hers again. “I don’t know where they buried him. I don’t know anything else and I promise you if I knew this before I would have told you.”
Tasia listened to him and she was somewhat glad he didn’t recoil from her in horror when she had mentioned vengeance and blood. She looked such a delicate flower, as Doctori had always reminded her, but she was still a woman who had been ground underfoot for most of her life. She listened to his plan. It made sense and seemed pretty safe and assured, or perhaps that was just how Caius came across. He came across as a mountain of assurance and sound hope. He had become a strength, a beacon of light in a dark time. And Caius was smarter than anyone could have thought.
“If you give Medicus your list of things... he may be able to acquire what you need.” She said quietly. “And gate must be locked to stop any... intrusions.” She murmured quietly to him, as if still wary they would be caught. She knew they were insured safety here. His plan made sense as long as it remained secret and she nodded finally. She could make a choice on whether she wanted to take debt from flesh on the day or not. Even if she was discovered and murdered, at least she would have fought for something and he was right, they needed something to fight for in these times.
“I will aid any way I can. Ground poppy seeds would make an effective sleeping aid, if enough were present. The water supply.. I have access to. The vases kept down below.” She muttered. I will set them aside, so the servants know which to drink from and which to avoid or I can stash them in the Medicus chamber, so the water is safe.” She was growing thoughtful but his words brought her back. A flash of interest, perhaps more hope was within her in an instant.
“What happened?” She asked, simply not caring if the news was good or bad. She wanted the truth about her brother, her eyes scanned Caius as she moved towards him.
“Strong or not, everyone deserves to know what happened to beloved family.” She encouraged him, she had waited almost a full year, perhaps two, to know what had happened to her brother. Her hair was forgotten about as he moved it and although he was being so gentle with her, her impatience and desperation were evident for facts. She sat close to him, urging him to speak with her eyes, she had waited too long. Maybe her brother hasn’t died? Maybe there was hope!
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