Marcus said her ankle was not broken and asked if she could move her foot. She wriggled it a little bit, but let out a pained whimper... "I can move it, but it... hurts." She said, while he kept talking to Clio and explained how he knew about injuries. Then he spoke about races and the Circus Maximus and how he was the head of one of the racing factions. Head of a racing faction!
"That's an impressive title!" Thalia said before she could stop herself, "I mean... well... it is. It could be fun seeing a race, now we know you. Once I can walk again." She added with a little sigh, wondering how in the name of Hades she was going to get back home again. Now this day wasn't going to be as much fun as she had thought it would.
"Do you think grandfather will let us go see a race soon?" She asked her sister. To her it was exiting, both because of the races themselves, but also all the people there. She loved watching people and talking to them and there were so many interesting things to see. To be honest, it was only half of the time that her eyes were on the actual race.
It was kind of the stranger to approach them and maybe offer his help somehow, and it was surprising he was the only one who did it. There was really every reason to treat him with kindness, she thought, and despite the pain she managed to remember her manners and introduced both her sister and herself. She did not think he knew anything about injuries, but thought he could go for help - then he surprised her by saying he did know about injuries and how to deal with them!
Then her sister asked if he was a medicus before she did, but she did not think he was. He was much too finely dressed to simply be a medicus, she thought to herself, and he then shared his name and said he knew about sprains and broken bones. Thalia nodded when he said he would take a look at her ankle and then he wrapped a hand around her bare skin and pressed gently.
She went all quiet while he did it and winced when he reached the part of the ankle where the tibia met with the ankle bone... "There..." She said. Meanwhile, Clio had been watching them in silence until she wondered how he learned these things. Thalia gave her a look, Clio was not so worried that she could not stop and ask him unrelated questions. What mattered was he knew stuff. She felt a tiny bit irritated that her sister was interrupting, always so curious, even when she should not be.
Thalia still sat on the ground after she fell, trying to twist her leg so that she could see her foot and ankle. That her dress slipped a bit up her leg she barely noticed, she was so busy with seeing if her ankle would swell or get a bruise or something. Her sister had cried out when she fell and Clio hurried to get to her side, asking if she was alright. Thalia looked at her, but before she could answer, there was a man approaching them, also asking if she was alright.
Funny that none of the young men from the fountain had come to her rescue, she thought to herself and looked up at the man - not as young and handsome as those in the fountain, but he seemed friendly and kind, she thought.
"I... don't know. I just fell. It does hurt." She said, glancing to her sister, wondering what she thought about the man approaching them. Honestly she did not fall on purpose, it was not fun being in pain. But that it made someone come to her aid was maybe not so bad? No matter what though, should they speak like this to a stranger? Probably not. She should introduce herself.
"This is my sister, Septima Minor. I share her name, although I am Major." She added, "Do you know anything about injuries, sir?"
She could see that her sister was considering the options. And she knew that she could sometimes be too spontaneous, but that's why her sister was so wonderful to have... she was so much more considerate for some reason, she was thoughtful, she did not just rush into things. You could say that Clio was almost like her conscience in some cases. Maybe now was one of those cases? And she would not jump into the water unless Clio thought it was alright. It was not that she wanted to embarrass her sister, she just wanted a little bit of fun too... she chuckled when the young men whistled and shook her head at them, and then Clio said she thought it was too much since Thalia was almost ready to marry.
"I suppose you're right." She said with a little sigh, thinking that it might always be too much. Right now she was almost ready to marry, but when she was married, certainly her husband would not allow such... fun? She did not think any proper man in Rome would allow his wife to jump into a fountain just like that.
"I won't, then." Thalia said and let go of the garland to step backwards and down from the edge of the fountain. It was then she let out a little yelp as she slipped on the wet edge and fell... not into the fountain, but onto the ground just next to it. Luckily she caught herself before her head hit the ground, but the foot that slipped hurt a little. Well this was not part of the plan and so not fun at all! She sat up more straight and bent her leg to look at the foot and ankle, forgetting all about young men and garlands for a moment.
Her sister blushed when the young men called out to them, but Thalia was more curious than shy about them. There were so many things she didn't know and she was so damn curious about it all! Hopefully her grandfather would soon find a husband for her, or else she did not know how much longer she could wait. She mused about controlling what was in the water and chuckled when the young men said she could do that.
Then she thought about also bathing in the fountains and this got Clio looking at her while they were arranging the garland on the fountain. Thalia was still entertaining the idea though, hoping her sister would not tell on her! But Clio didn't know if it would be a good idea, since people would see it.
"But it is a festival, Clio..." Thalia said, her eyes pleading, "Surely it would not be that wrong, would it?" She said, reaching up to wrap the garland around some more and she took a step to the side. Maybe she should not do it, although it was tempting and it wasn't even cold today. One of the handsome young men kept looking at her and sent her a wink and now she did blush when she looked at Clio again, "Why should I not?"
Her sister commented on Thalia's wonder about fountains not being sacred, but the water was. It really made no sense. But she quickly moved on, barely hearing what her sister said, because it looked like such a fun place to be, this area, right now. And to think this was going on in all of Rome. She smiled by the thought and wondered which fountain they should pick. Clio agreed on the largest fountain and they headed that way, Thalia happily smiling at everyone and maybe she glanced a little too long at the young men splashing in the water. She blushed a little, they were so handsome and their bodies glistening water pearls.
Then one of the young men commented on the twins coming with their garland, calling them nymphs and Thalia laughed, "Are we nymphs now? I wonder if we control the water then... or whatever is in the water..." She said with a smile, "What do you think, sister? If I'm a nymph, I suppose I should get into the water too..." She added with an arched brow and half an eye on the young men, certain that they were paying attention too.
It was a great idea, getting into the water. She looked at her sister and leaned closer, "You would not tell, would you? If I did go in...?"
Really, Rome without aqueducts was barely Rome at all, she thought to herself, as they walked together and somehow chatted about the fountains and aqueducts and sacredness and the history behind it all. Or, it was more her sister with the history and Thalia with the other chatting. She smiled when her sister chuckled at all her random questions, and then her sister calmly pointed out how the first fountain was built hundreds of years ago and mentioned some name Thalia would probably have forgotten anyway in a few moments. Then she said the fountains were not scared anymore, but the water was.
"That doesn't make sense. So the fountains aren't sacred, but the water in them is..." She tried to wrap her mind about that and about hundreds of years old fountains and then shook her head. It was too much to take in. She was here to have fun.
"Which fountain should we pick for our garland?" She asked then, looking around at the square and the people and all the flowers and happiness they were surrounded by... "How about the large one?" She nodded over towards the largest fountain, which was already decorated with several garlands, but she decided she also wanted in on the big one. Carefully she tugged at the garland she and her sister held, to pull Clio with her. It was only a matter of time however, before the garland might break.
It wasn’t that Septima hadn’t wanted her sister to be dressed up in something more colorful and vibrant – but she knew that her sister didn’t like that and preferred to be more down-to-Earth and not quite so noticeable. So she’d picked that dress with the matching palla… but made sure she was well-decorated with flowers too. Together they now carried the garland they made together and Septima was, as usual, chatty on the way to the fountain.
Clio, as she sometimes called her sister, agreed it would look very pretty and then Septima went on about how she hoped it would all be. Her sister naturally knew exactly what she meant, when she wondered if anyone were swimming in the pools.
“I’m not sure I’m very good at being discrete.” Septima said with a laugh, when Clio warned her to not catch them looking. She smiled at everyone they passed and then her sister of course had to mention some of the history behind the fountains they’d arrived at. She knew Clio was like a wandering scroll of knowledge and sometimes, what she talked about was kind of boring, but sometimes, it was interesting. Like now.
“Really? Sacred fountains, hm… do you think they’re still sacred? Can they cure the sick… or are they sacred in another way? I wonder why they are not sacred anymore. Where did the... sacredness go, if they are not sacred anymore?” Septima mused, wondering how something could be sacred at one point and then suddenly, not sacred anymore. She looked around, “I can’t imagine Rome without the aqueducts. They’re everywhere!”