Valeria stood behind her children, her hand affectionately combing through the mop of hair on Minor's head and she could feel the slight weight of Valeriana's body leaning against her own. She was grateful the two of them were well behaved while their father began the ritual to protect the family home from whatever evil spirits may lurk, looking for a place to feast upon. This was a ritual that she had seen played out every year since she could remember. First her father's home and now the home of her husband. A ritual she was proud to play her part in.
One day, she knew, it would be her son's duty to honor the good spirits that kept their house welcoming and food in their house. Thus, when she woke them that morning to get ready to witness the ritual, for them to be observant and watch for the cues that their father would give to them.
Solemnly, she watched as her husband reached out for the gong, expecting it to be placed in his hand within seconds and her eyes trailed over to the still yet unfamiliar face of the newest member of the household slaves. It was not her place to question her husband's purchases, but this young man was still new to the family, to her, and she had yet to find the familiarity in him that she had with the other members of their serving staff. But there was no malice in her gaze, instead she smiled encouragingly to the young man, hoping he would his duty in this moment with poise.
30 | July 7th, 43AD | Female | Senatore Patricianus | Housewife & Mother | Hetero | Anna Hutchison
If it as all possible that being a mother and wife changes a person, Valeria would be the perfect example of such change. Once a capricious, vain, and somewhat selfish being, the past decade saw the change in Valeria that was much needed. Her teenage self is but a distance memory to her, and in her place is a wife and mother who would give the sun and moon to her children if she was divine enough to do so. Her loyalty and love towards her family is something that has never changed with the mother of two, if anything it's only deepened and became far more fierce due to circumstances. She has also become more empathetic towards people and their plights, and has found herself far more charitable than her pre-marriage and pre-motherhood self would have ever dreamed to be.
Short in stature and thin in build, Valeria is a waif of a girl and motherhood hasn't really taken away her teenaged figure. She is fragile looking, breakable. Her naturally straight hair is a vibrant shade of red-orange. Almost the color of leaves in autumn. Her eyes are the color of the sea, a deep aquamarine. Her eyes have a sparkle of mischievousness in them when she's playful. She has her personal slave in the know of the current hair styles and makeup trends. Even if she seldom wears the latter, unless on an evening outing. An easy burner, she stays out of the sun and her skin shows it. A pale alabaster ivory, she has a light spray of freckles across her nose and cheeks. Which truly shows when she blushes. Her hands and feet are small, thanks to her stature and build, and she is well groomed. Befitting her station in life. Personal hygiene is important to her. Her dressing style is typical Roman garb of her station. Gracefully draped chitons in soft colors that complement her complexion and coloring. Of course the traditional white takes up prime residence in her wardrobe. She has a love for jewelry, however wears very little on a day to day basis. Her finer pieces come out when she's out attending more formal occasions.
Marcus Valerius Maximus, 57, Alive
Cornelia Maxima, Deceased
Marcus Valerius Maximus Minor, 39, Alive
Manius Valerius Maximus, 33, Alive
Octavius Flavius Alexander, 36, Alive
Octavius Flavius Alexander Minor, 9, alive
Flavia Valeriana, 5,alive
Sempronia Maxima - Sister-in-Law - mid 30s
Valeria Marcella - 15 - niece
Manius Valerius Maximus - Grandfather - Deceased
Sulpicia Maxima - grandmother -deceased
Gaius Valerius Maximus - Uncle - 45 + family
Lucius Valerius Maximus - Uncle - 43 + family
In-Laws : check Octs' application!
Household servants and personal slaves
CHILDHOOD [43 AD TO 56 AD]:
Born to Marcus Maximus and his wife, Valeria was the youngest of three and the only girl. As such she was doted upon from the get go. All the while raised, by her sainted mother, to be a proper lady among Roman society. Marcus Minor, her eldest brother was ten years older than she, and as such, she did not have the close relationship she had with Manius. Who was born just a few years before her. When she was old enough, her parents decided it was time she began her lessons. And along side Manius, she did so. In all things but those subject deems improper for young girls of gentle upbringing.
Her mother's death defined the young woman Valeria became. Watching her mother waste away from illness, and begging the gods to spare her beloved mater, Valeria swore to herself that no one would ever take her mother's place. Cornelia's death took not only part of her daughter's heart, but ripped away the girl's ability to be a kind and gentle young woman to those outside of her family. Two years after her mother's passing, her brother was once more married and together with his wife brought forth a little girl that became the center of Valeria's family life.
TEENAGE TO EARLY ADULT [57 AD TO 62 AD]:
The last few years has gone smoothly for Valeria, even if Rome was shaking due the deaths in the Imperial family. With the birth of her niece, Valeria had something to focus on but even Marcella couldn't discourage her from her favorite past time. Which was keeping her father from remarrying. She, years ago, made it her life's work to dissuade her father from taking a second wife. There was no need for him to do so, in her opinion. He had two healthy sons. One married and starting a family. And if a decent girl could be found, one that was agreeable to herself, Manius would be married as well. Her father simply did not need a second marriage, be the match romantic or political.
In late 60 AD and the dawn of 61, she , like the rest of the empire, waited to see what the world was destined to turn into. With the death of the Augusta and murders of the Caesars. Albeit a passing thought to the young woman who is looking forward to the marriage market and her father finding a proper husband to marry her off to. At least with the victory in Judaea, her beloved brothers had returned to the family fold. She never expected her father to aim as high as he did when it came to her husband to be. Nor did she realize what role she would end up playing in the near future. But by the end of 61, she was a married woman. Her husband, the late Augusta's own younger brother.
ADULTHOOD [62 AD - 73 AD]:
Motherhood found her in the time of the civil war, tucked safely in Syria with her mother-in-law and her dear sister and niece. She had lead her father and brothers to the side of Alexander, having been determined not to lose them in vain. And within the course of the year, she had born a son that was in the likeness of his father. Aptly named after the man who had sired him. She would return to Rome with her family, little Octavius tucked close to her at the rise of her brother in law to Emperor. Her own social role as a matron of Rome now more prominent as her husband stayed at his brother's side.
As a mother, she found herself more willing to focus on Octavius Minor after suffering an early miscarriage term miscarriage nearly a year after her son's conception. And she would not fall pregnant again until after the great Annthea had made her journey to the afterlife. Valeriana came into the world, much like her brother, a quick and easy delivery. So her midwife would say. Healthy and heavy for her sex. Deemed worthy of life and presented to her husband as tradition called for. Eight days later when certain the child would not take a turn for the worst, she would name her little girl after herself, Valeriana. A decision made mostly thanks to the peach fuzz soft hair that was just a shade of ginger darker than her own.
At her husband's insistence, she began taking tonics and potions to lessen her chances at getting pregnant once more. A path she was willing to take. Pregnancy and childbirth had taken its toll and made its mark on her young body. If the gods willed another from her, she would have it but neither would force the issue. Instead she becomes a supporting force in her husband's desire to build and focused on her children and certain charities she found fulfilled something deep inside of her.
The woman allowed her body to relax into her husband's embrace, at ease with the closeness to him. A laugh leaving her as she listened to him with interest. "Still. They'll have you rebuilding all of Rome before the end of everything" She taunted playfully, however, she was proud of him and his accomplishments. And she was selfish enough to enjoy the fact that it kept him tied to the city. And not somewhere faraway. Jullus was still in Germania and Laelius was wherever Quintus had stationed the boy.
She had a mind to ask her husband to do something about the latter. Quintus would listen to him. "She's doing wonderfully, the children adore her. All of them. I think it's because of her age. We're ancient in their eyes. Plus they are thrilled with their new cousin, even if he's too small to play with." She teased once more with a small laugh. "However, I think she would like a familiar, and welcomed face. We should make sure she doesn't dine in her chambers tonight."
Valeria had came into her own over the last decade; as a wife, as a mother and as a leading matron of Rome. Not only lending a guiding hand to her sisters-in-law when it came to be the ideal Flavian wife. The children had wandered off to go oo-and-awe over the latest addition to the family home, little Publius. And to crowd Lucretia with attention as she recovered. Leaving Valeria with a rare and precious moment to relax and enjoy her home free of the demands of her small children. She enjoyed it, but still she missed them when their attentions were elsewhere.
Footsteps neared her and she smiled as she recognized them almost instantly. They were the same as always. Firm, masculine, a slight hitch from battles fought and age taking over. Her husband was home, a bit earlier today than many days. She didn't mind his work. His work was important, he was busy carving out a name for himself, to keep from being swallowed up by Quintus' glory. His voice, deep and filled with mirth, echoed slightly through the quietness of the triclinium as he greeted her in their casual and usual manner.
"Husband... all is well and the children have ran off to bother dear Lucretia, as if she needs more annoyances while she is on the last stages of her recovery" She muttered back in reply, tilting her head to accept the kiss as she eased into his embrace, her arms sliding easily around his shoulders as she shifted closer to him. "There is no need to apologize." She wanted him to hush with those apologies, she knew him. She knew how he worked and how he placed his family above all things. She was not insecure enough to believe that he was out chasing other women. Even if he wanted to, she wouldn't be bothered.
"Your work is important, Octavius and is so as equally to me as it is to you. You need never worry if I am bothered by that, I am not." What he was doing was building a legacy for their son and their future grandsons, and he had that firmly in his hands, she was content in keeping their present in order. "But tell me, how are you? Do I need tell our Emperor and Empress to stop from working you too hard?" She questioned a bit cheekily.