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Knight

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Knight last won the day on April 15

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  1. His mind had shunted the world of his forefathers out of his mind, but everytime Cinnia spoke, it hammered its' way back in. He found himself looking at her again, as she replied to his instinctive little gift. Oh, he was a fool. Trying to run from the pain of his captivity, yet gifting a little part of his past to someone like her...perhaps it was his way of shaking his bonds a bit looser. Standing here, offering a member of the Brigante Royal House a trubite, it was as if for a split second, they were back in a longhouse of their folk, fires roaring. She implored him not to forget, and...he tempted himself every night with letting those memories of home go unattended, and thereby drift away. It would be easy. It would be simple. To all those who saw him fight, he was nothing but a Roman slave, free of heritage or a life. Not to her. She was Cinnia of the Brigante, a kinswoman. "I'll never forget. Should my life go on until the seas boil and the world turns inside out, I'll not forget." He noted, smiling in thanks as the warrior woman took up his chainmail shirt. They began again to walk, his collar bone no longer scraping, yet the warrior held it still. "I used to, long ago. I've carved two things in five years." He nodded towards her. "That one took three weeks." Not for lack of skill, he just had his head broken by an armoured boot a day into the process, and it had taken a week after it had healed. Should he tell her that it felt good to gift it away? To gift it away to a strong, beautiful, warrior of his people? Perhaps a dozen years before, with her husband dead, this would have been the start to a friendship, or a courtship, or some subservience. "They'll fix me. They always do. I'm a war hound, and this will heal." He gently tapped his collar bone. "I won before the Imperial Family. There will be more fights for me upon that hill." His eye sparked, and he tried to find her gaze. "I would...would you watch? So I might learn from you, and know one of us will witness my death?" To die, with Cinnia watching? That would...that might be acceptable. @Atrice
  2. Pain like a collarbone tended to numb after a time. He was used to that fracture pain, and it only really moved if he pressed on it, causing the two segments of bone to grind against each other - but it was starting to swell. A medicus would likely review his condition, determine how long he would need to recover, then half it and take their money. He was a commodity. But...he didn't feel any motivation to move. Pain was just pain. You got used to it. Standing here with a fellow Brigante was unique, and he wished to prolong it. "You're right. I don't have to." Owyn stated, definitely, and then, lightly as a bird perching upon a thin branch in the forests of their home, he moved to press his hand over her's, as if to curl her fingers even tighter over the carving. "Nevertheless, I would that you have it. Without obligation or cost, only that you might never forget our home." His aristocratic lilt had come back in true strength now, but then he caught a curious glance from a slave as they passed in the main road, and suddenly the world came rushing back. He had to make it back to the Iudus, and be ready to be looked over. It might well be far worse than he thought. Time to head back to slavery, and likely never to see Cinnia again. Perhaps he would never meet another Brigante, or another Briton. Home seemed so far away, but for a few minutes, speaking to her in his home tongue, the fields of Britain had seemed just beyond the gates. He could almost smell the daffodils blooming outside their hall, hear their horses prancing in the meadows, catch the scent of their hounds mingling with hay and soot and meat and people - his people. No. Best to forget it. He was never going home. "You're right." 'Marius' stated, in Latin. He huffed through his nostrils, and pushed away from the wall. @Atrice
  3. That settled it! Simple and effective, just how he liked it! Once she was of marrying age, he'd plough her into the ground, and continue raiding around Prydain until the fucking Romans put tail between legs and fled back across the seas! See how stupid he was back then? Young men have minds full of nothing but fucking and fighting, and they're usually only any good at the second. Still, for all his idiocy, Owyn had that winning grin that he flashed back at Annis as they moved. "Oh, think nothing of it. We're all children of this land, and we're all one against the bloody Romans!" He declared, moving a set of elm branches aside with his spear and allowing the young girl past. His strong arm glistened with muscle, but the mud and blood had started to dry and he casually brushed a few flakes from his forearm. His short hair was drying, though the moisture had still left it plastered to his skull. "Since the betrayal of our warleader, Eppitacos, Belatucadros save him." Owyn gave a low huff at that, but he still seemed cheerful. "We're three dozen strong, and they follow me for my blood is strong and hearty with the nobility of the Brigantes." He declared it proudly, for to be a nobleman was a great and proud thing, even if it didn't carry any brains with it. @Echo
  4. Yeah, that was how it usually went. He knew the battle, and he'd been a few years younger than her, serving beside his father as a weapon-bearer. As a nobleman, he'd thought it such a fine thing, and he still remembered the taste of wine on his lips after the battle. Still, he was more than willing to move the topic of conversation - he still got nervous anytime he saw a notched rod. Regardless, he realised now he was speaking to an important warrior, if she was cousin to the traitor, Ysolda. Should he bow? Should he kiss her feet, and beg forgiveness for not recognising? No, he supposed they were both just slaves now. "I don't suppose any of us do." Owyn noted, with a sigh and a sour look. "Strange. It all seems a lifetime away." He touched a hand to his scars, and then found something around his neck. An old carving of the Brigante war-god, Belatucadros, tied in a leather pouch. She clearly had poor luck in regards to battles, and...well, she was the first of his kinfolk he had found in a long time. He had a larger carving at his quarters. Standing in that little archway, with one arm agony to move, he pulled the little carving from around his neck and offered it to Cinnia. "Technically you're royalty, so think of this as my tribute." He said, a slight smile gracing his lips for the first time. His hands had become innately talented over the years, and the carving was a fine thing, elegant and with the symbols of their home scratched in with care. "You've better weapon-luck than me, perhaps Belatucadros favours you more." See, it was the first thing he'd been able to give in six years, and it felt like flexing an old muscle. Offering something to someone for no other reason than...well, she should have it. It seemed the right thing to do. @Atrice
  5. It's generally ill-advised to be a sarcastic prick to the people who can have you killed. It was always important to remember the simple truth, though - her people had come to his homeland, burned their homes, raped the women, and enslaved them. They had killed more of his people than any plague, any disaster. So, part of 'Marius' was always guarded against kindness, decency, and respect. There was always a reason. A soft voice often had a whispered command behind it. He avoided her gaze, picking a spot somewhere on the floor to stare at. "Marius, domina, yes." He'd been named after some great Roman soldier, apparently. He didn't care. He supposed part of his six years as a slave had grown some attachment to the name, like a nickname you hated but got used to over time. But he could understand her just fine - while he spoke Latin in a harsh, plebeian accent, he had never found it difficult to grasp languages. Writing bemused him, but when a tongue flowed around you, you either jumped in or got swallowed up. "My Latin is passable, domina." He told her, confidently, unsure if that violated the golden rule of 'speak when spoken to - SMACK!'. He'd been informed by a slave that he was to act as a bodyguard to his owner's wife. That was really all of it. He didn't care to know more. Roman politics were beyond him, and he didn't need to know. If anyone came within 5 feet of her with a weapon, he'd kill them. Truth be told, it was probably a good fit. Quick and brutal tended to be his style, and...well, if he was honest, he was resigned to his fate. They'd broken him a few years back, and he'd soon as climb into the sky with a ladder of rope than turn upon his masters. You couldn't win. Still. He sat still, listening, attentive, glancing upwards from time to time. It was a strange thing. He'd heard mutterings that, long before, barbarians had broken the gates of Rome, and carried off their women. Now, a Roman woman commanded a Briton warrior with merely her voice and her position. "I am Marius. I was...taken six years ago. I...I am..." What was he supposed to say? Before you came along, I was happy? I fucked beautiful women, I killed Romans, and I was free? "I have been fighting up and down Italia for six years. I've fought in 58 bouts, and won 45 of them. I defeated Carpophorus in Ravenna, and held Flamma the Syrian to a draw in Capua." He rattled it off, unsure what else to say. "I've been told to kill anyone who tries to hurt you." Would that do? @Sara
  6. Doing some good!? Er...Yes! Definitely that! That's what he told everyone! He yelled and boasted how the Britons deserved their land, and the Romans were vile invaders to be quashed and scourged and generally attacked. Truth was, though, Owyn just enjoyed it all. He was twenty one, he was born to fight, and the life he lived of drink, excitement, and violence meant more to him than any settled existence. Of course she was coming along, he noted, for she'd seen him naked and very few woman could see him naked and not follow on. Using the pila as an aid, he weaved quickly, occasionally glancing up. "I suppose I am, yes. You'll fit right in. We love fighting, we drink, we try not to do any harm to fellow Britons..." And, because they were young and strong, they tended to revel and dance any chance they got. It was a life well lived. "You're young, but no one will touch you." and he glanced sideways at her, briefly. "Without your express and explicit permission." He enjoyed the movement, and his voice was quiet enough that soon, the sounds of the Roman parties began to drift away. @Echo
  7. You forgot how the other half lived, and you forgot how the other half suffered. Men were chattel, women were playthings. You had to be realistic about these things - and Cinnia had probably been raped more times than he could count. Part of him felt that same noble wrath he'd always felt at such atrocities...but that was a childish, old emotion. It wouldn't rewrite what had happened to them. In the same way she perhaps looked at his wounds and winced, he dreaded the thought of being constantly abused in such a way. Atleast there was always a way out for Owyn - just give up. For her? Not so much. "I must confess, I never truly thought about it. I...I think you rather got the rougher end of that slice of ill luck." The gladiator replied, his aristocratic tone and vernacular starting to peek out more and more. Bones healed. His scars only really pained him in the morning, or when he slept. He couldn't sleep on his left, and his ankle went rigid in the cold, but he was never terrified of grasping hands in the darkness. Eppitacos? He'd not known the man, only followed him! Fought as a young warrior, proud and strong! Oh, those were the days! Back when Owyn had been a young idiot with no sense, no brains, and spiked lime hair. If he couldn't fuck it, drink it, or kill it, he found a way to do so. No, he and the great leader of the Brigantes had never met, but he'd shined as an idol in the man's mind for years. Only in slavery had Owyn come to quietly despise him. You couldn't fight Rome. "Our great leader. I fought under him, as a charioteer. When he was lost to us, I spent near on 6 years raiding and killing, the usual sort of brigandry. What of you?" The great brute of a man moved to stand beside Cinnia, to take up less of the archway and thereby less attention. To his nose, she smelled of woad and wine, of roads and tilled fields. A thin wisp of desire stirred, but he sternly strangled it in its' crib. Here was a country-woman he could talk to and enjoy, he wouldn't ruin it with some clumsy advance. Especially not after all she had been through. @Atrice
  8. They fought the bloody Romans anyway they could! With fire, with spears, with axes, with javelins, swords, hounds, and landslides, road blocks, horse stampedes. Fight like wraiths in the night, like hounds snapping at the heels of their masters! Bite the hand that rips away your homeland! That was Owyn's view, and he fucking loved it. It felt like he was living again. Oh, fuck, he had best be on the hoof. They'd be waiting for him soon. "Your father may have, but these Romans don't think like us." He cackled, looking upwards to get his bearings - yep, he knew where he was. Two miles west, and round Ceratumnus's Hill, and he'd be there. Best to get moving. "Annis. Fuck me, you're beautiful. Come on, let's get moving. We usually do raids like that, but it's all about opportunity." Owyn was moving as he spoke, heading directly west with a practised woodsman's air. He kept speaking as he moved, skipping upwards and through the woods as he did so - this country was their home, and he knew Annis would be just as accustomed. "So, what's a lass like you doing round here? Me, see I'm a killing man in a land conquered by sandal-wearing boy fuckers. You, you look like you should be winning sword-wife competitions somewhere. You know how to fight!" @Echo
  9. "I'm a fucking warri- gladiator, not a bodyguard." "Marius. You've been killing folk for 6 years. It's a cushy job. Fuck the kitchen slaves, make sure no one touches the domina, get your freedom and fuck off." He had everything packed, but he was literally just property, so his possessions weren't exactly expansive. A little statue of Belatucadros, his patron god, a Gallic longsword, his lorica hamata, a few worn blue tunics, and an amphora of wine from Messina. He'd only been in the Iudus Magnus a few weeks, and he was being moved again. Owyn had been itinerant for most of his time in Italia, fighting bouts up and down the great cities of the Roman Empire, and earning a reputation as utterly without show, or style, but ruthlessly good at just murdering people. Packing away his belongings, his closest friend Hamilcar and he had been chatting. Hamilcar was a Phoenician brute, olive skinned and ferocious, but he was smaller than Owyn by a good few inches. They'd bonded over a few months of sparring, and Owyn had broken his arm the year before - no hard feelings. In their trade, you forgave and forgot. He was a friend, and many nights had been wiled away sparring, competing, and gambling. Hamilcar was faster, but Owyn could run for longer. Still. All good things must come to an end. Their dominus's attendants came to escort 'Marius' up to the big house on the hill, and Owyn turned to his old comrade. "Remember our pact?" He asked, crooking an eyebrow. "Of course. Come buy my freedom when she sets you free. Calpurnius Marius? Calpurnius Africanus? We could open up a Iudus together." They grinned, and touched foreheads to one another. There was that old pain that the Briton had grown accustomed to. Losing a part of you. Here was a friend who had shared much hardship with him - and though they would see each other soon, it would not be the same ever again. The trip up to the big house was quiet, and the gladiator got a few looks and curious glances. A champion, but not a legend. Some said he could've taken any of the most famed fighters, but most agreed that such a spectacle would not be nearly so satisfying as the finest bouts of the last few years. He just wasn't...showy. He was handsome, strong, and tall - but he just killed people. A red-headed idiot greeted them at the door, and Marius briefly loomed over him. A quick look, and it was evident that this one might be an issue for keeping the domina safe. Still, he followed the slave up, and was shown into his new charge's room. She was exactly what he had expected in terms of her presence. Perfect, Roman, elegance made manifest. A symbol of all thar Rome held up as pious and virtuous. He'd not expected the red hair, but he knew that it wasn't unheard of amongst his captors. There was no lust in Owyn's gaze - he was eyeing her with the same look a tradesman overlooked a task. For his part, Owyn had shaved, and his bright blonde hair was shorn in the legionary style. His best blue tunic stretched across his shoulders, and he wore the caligae of the legions. Show in, he bowed from the waist. "Domina." He intoned, with practised formality. Offered a seat, he took one, and slowly tried to ease his shoulders. He was a giant amongst them, but he kept his head down, and avoided her gaze. He was a slave. He could never forget that. He didn't know this woman. When he had been first enslaved, he'd taken liberties with Roman women whom he thought were kind and good - smiling, joking, nodding. Then they had ordered him beaten, and he still couldn't sleep on his left side. He waited for her to speak. If they broke his right shoulder again, he would have to sleep on his front. @Sara
  10. You don't really get used to pain. You find ways to handle it, you find ways to force yourself to. For Owyn, he turned his mind and dug into the pain in his mind's eyes. He focused on it, rolled over it in his head, and that helped him not to scream. The medicus did it properly. Short, sharp, surprising, and you got their attention away from it. Owyn had been looking away when the shoulder moved back into place with the Roman's practised care. The agony immediately began to fade, and the Briton moved his fingers and his wrist. His icy blue eyes came up and pinned him with the wolf-like stare. "Theodorus. Well done." It wasn't a congratulation, it was a statement of fact. Remember the name, because good healers are rare as gemstones, and this was a fine sign. He glanced down at the laceration to his leg, and huffed, a bit curious as to how the medicus would tend to that. @Chevi
  11. Now, that was something he hadn't heard in a long time. Five years. Five years not to hear the words your father taught you growing up, five years speaking the language of the kith who enslaved and broke you. It was...both an unsettling and thrilling experience. Owyn's eyes widened, and he looked about, as if expecting all this to be some trick of the light - she must be some spirit, sent to torment him, or some frightful creature from the realm of the Gods, punishing him for his impiety. But no, it was all frightfully mundane - a kinswoman was speaking his tongue to him once more. "How could I ever forget it?" Owyn replied, his mouth smoothly slipping over the syllables of his mother tongue with eager familiarity. Oh, his accent was a bit rusty, but you could hear that aristocratic lilt to it. He had been a nobleman, a lifetime ago. "They're just...Romans. They do as they please." He wasn't eager to move again - the little archway provided shelter, and he was excited to speak his own language again. Talking in it with a beautiful warrior-woman...it called back memories of a life he had forgotten about. "Cinnia. Cinnia. Owyn. Cinnia. Owyn Owyn, Owyn, Cinnia, Cinnia. Owyn. Owyn. Lugu. Eppitacos. By Lugu's spear, I've missed speaking as our kinsfolk do." He did not speak in the hasty manner of a youth, but seemed to revel in every word, dance his tongue over them. Once, he'd been able to sing. Once, he'd been able to tell jokes, to laugh, to whisper sweet nothings and grand boasts. The agony in his collar seemed to deaden against the little spark. "I know I should not be shamed by my wounds, but...many were not fairly earned in combat. You seem free of such injuries, while I seem little more than a prize warhound, scratches and all." Owyn was clearly getting back into the feel of the language now, but he slumped against the archway. @Atrice
  12. When he was young, his scars had been something to display like trophies by the fireside. Now, standing infront of a kinswoman, he didn't feel like he was showing off. Morrigan's glare, he even felt...like they were something to be ashamed of? Here he was, about to display his physique to a compatriot, someone who understood the beatings, the floggings, the kickings....and part of him wanted to shy away. Owyn followed her into the archway, and for a moment, he hesitated. The pain was just part of life - but revealing himself to this woman...Fuck. It felt different. Slowly, they brought the chainmail shirt up and over his shoulders, and the dull blue tunic went with it. The pain from his collarbone made Cinnia's aid indispensable - there was a moment or two where the horrendous grinding of his collarbone prevented any movement, but her strength eased the ringmail awat. His waist was covered by cloth wrappings, but his chest was bare, and once, it might have been a pleasant sight. To a certain eye, it might remain so. But the first few years of his captivity, they had broken him with rod and whip, after numerous acts of rebellion and disobedience. Most of his left pectoral had been burned, so that the flesh was scarred and puckered. A retiarius had stuck him in the stomach a year before, so three puckered marks were clear just to the right of his navel. A thousand other little marks, cuts, burns spoke of a life where injury just happened. He was nothing but muscle, of course, for he did little but spar, eat, and run, but the marks upon him were ugly and pronounced. As the chainshirt came up and over his head, he quickly procured the tunic from it and set to slipping it over his head. He wasn't proud anymore. He was ashamed to show his failings, his stupidity. "I'm sorry." The gladiator stated, regaining some composure. "Thank you for your help." He threw the tunic back over his shoulders, and nodded, clarity hitting him. He saw her as a comrade in arms, and to show the evidence of his foolish rebellion to an equal, it was embarassing. "I never thought I'd find another Brigante warrior so far from home. Especially not in such a state." @Atrice
  13. Ah, there was that old pain. Another Brigante. See, in his first year, he'd met another Brigante. Togodumnus. They'd tried to escape together, but a friend of their's had told their masters - so they crucified Togodumnus. Owyn had been left out of the report. He'd stared at the man for about a week, as his body slowly wasted away. So when she spoke of their people, his first reaction was to shut her out and stop fucking talking...but she seemed settled. Maybe she'd had the same experience. Most escapees usually ended up in the ground, but sometimes you got lucky. But he was so tired of just shutting up. He was tired of being bored. So he kept speaking, and shoved down the slight grimace - he instead felt the glimmer of recognition. He matched her smile with one of his own, the expression of a shared homeland. "Cinnia." He said, a name he'd heard a few times. His natural accent came through there, for the first time in years. "I should have guessed. Our women were always smarter than our menfolk." He could imagine this 'Cinnia' in ringmail astride a chariot, leading a host against a foe. So he tilted his head and let loose some spark of the man he had once been - "Good to see nothing's changed." At the mention of his ringmail, he had a brief war with his pride, and promptly rolled over it with the aid of his pain. Finally, he nodded. "If you could, I'd appreciate it." He was built like a warhound, and the ringmail shirt was well-fitted - that meant it might well pull up most of his tunic, but too many hours of being used and abused by Roman masters had given him too much modesty on that matter. @Atrice
  14. FUCK. YES. Three more Romans dead, and his blood was up. All he wanted to do was kiss this lass, not only because she shined like the sun in winter, but because she had just saved his arse and she needed thanking! Fortunately, he instead just laughed right back at her, grinning from ear to ear once more. "...You had two swords? Lugu curse me, I could've used that!" He could barely get the words out, he was just too busy laughing and trying to keep quiet. Still, work to do, and best to get it done. Owyn yanked off a tunic from the first he'd slain, and buckled on the man's swordbelt. He then heaved the corpses into the bushes, methodically and quickly - he'd done it more times than he could possibly count. "Look, there's a meeting place about a league from here, I know the way." He whispered once the corpses had been hidden. "You can go your own way, you'll be fine, or you can join us and have a warm bed and companions. I'm Owyn, by the way, of the Brigantes." They had to move soon, but he hoped she would join. She was a talent with that sword, and soon enough she'd find her feet - and if those feet landed at the foot of his bed, so much the better. @Echo
  15. Marius knew what came next. It was pain like someone smashing your shoulder to pieces, and he usually could tough it out, but fuck, he couldn't be bothered today. He nodded for the wine, and when presented, took a long gulp of the stuff. Fucking Romans, but they could make wine. "I've had it done a few times. Quick and sudden, that's the trick." Already, he was starting to warm to this one. He had the kind of face he recognised from the halls - clever, whimsical, hilarious. "Just don't tell me when you do it." @Chevi
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