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  1. Mord

    Mordreds Plotter

    Bump I can start playing a bit again. Look out from some new characters coming too!
  2. Requesting a Villa in the Provincae Italia for Justinus Junius Calvus Approx Half-day travel from Rome
  3. Yay! Roman Orgies! Woohoo!
  4. "Of course I don't mean to expand, we don't know how large the world is truly, though we can guess. But what's to prevent preemptive measures? Scorched earth against our enemies, like we did with Carthage, destroyed it brick by brick and salted the earth to never rise again." Justinus didn't forget about the threat from within either, the risk of civil war or uprising, consolidation was always good and necessary before expansion. "How much do you think we take? How much wealth comes to Roma? Perhaps... For the interior provinces-" He said 'Interior' provinces, as differing from 'Exterior' ones - ones not yet conquered or held yet, a simple sentiment of Romes right to rule the world, given to her by the Gods. "-To share some of Rome's wealth. If they are given rewards, even charity perhaps, we are no longer conquerors but divine and just benefactors. Don't mistake me however, I know full well the prosperity we create but still; Patriotism is in the hearts of many and they would ignore such civilization, but they can't ignore blatant acts of progression and kindness. A assertive show of strength might do well too, perhaps a Legion to tour through the provinces in full regalia." Justinus wasn't exactly a Defensores, he knew that Romes greatest strength was it's Legions and thus they needed to be present, to inspire and intimidate. "I suppose all I am doing by saying this is looking for a fellow statesmen who share similar beliefs as I, I suppose it makes a Moderati, since I neither favor expansionism nor some of the Publici's policies." Justinus shrugged and looked towards the forum.
  5. Mord

    Two Senators

    Justinus was surprised at how animated the man had become towards his mention of a military career than felt as though he understood when he mentioned having served in Northern Gaul and later the hardships that had befallen. Justinus was never meant to be here, he wanted to serve in the Legion till death but most of the men in his family were dead now, Clemens had saw too that, as well as just bad luck with illness, Justinus himself was never actually meant to become anything; maybe a companion to his older brothers successes, he figured it was why he had been encouraged to join the Legion in the first place - Tucked away in some nice corner away from Rome but conveniently close enough to support the family as a soldier. He wondered if the man sitting next to him regretted following a different path, no matter how similar it was different after all. Perhaps he wished he had stayed a Legionary? "Nearly three, closer to two but I suppose the art of politics is always to embellish a little bit without outright lying." He chuckled a little in his throat "I was in Germania. A German spear ended my military career, straight through the hip." He pulled his subligaculum down slightly to expose the scar on his hip and present it, it was noticeable, the tissue stark white compared to the rest of his tan skin and slightly puckered, he replaced his garment and looked ahead thoughtfully as he listened to the man tell him of his wife and daughter, nodding in understanding "I grieve with you, the death of a spouse is a feeling I can unfortunately relate too." "I have three, Lucius Junius is my oldest, then there are twins. Gaius and Junia. I love all of them, and would see them to inherit the best parts of me, and my fortunes and career, it's the least I can do for them." Justinus sighed through his nose and smiled ruefully
  6. "Indeed. Conflicting ideas can birth situations such as the civil war however, and I do not mean to deny anyone - least of all my children or yours - the honour of serving in the Legions." Justinus didn't necessarily have all the answers to the question that disturbed him. How to save Rome? It's glory, it's magnificence was unmatched by any in the entire world but yet it was a facade covering the cracks of time, the divisions of distance, language and religion breaking apart the old world. Rome was an Apex predator, but the older it became the slower and weaker it was; it was strange, disturbingly so, that the Empire seemed to weaken as it grew wealthier, expansive and more diverse. But it must NOT weaken, yet how to find support? How to get Senators convinced that if they stopped squabbling and rallied with the common knowledge of what needed to be done, that they could strengthen and grow the Empire further? Was it entitlement? Self-pride in that no one can defeat Rome for her Legions are too great? "Perhaps, the dangers of what I speak, the divisions, isn't necessarily here. But all across the Empire. We grew to the point that a hundred different languages are spoken across our territory with hundreds of different Gods worshiped. How long before the next uprising? How long before Parthia exploits our overstretched borders? We no longer assert our divine right to rule; our inheritance from our forefathers all the way to the exalted Romulus. Instead we guard our borders and huddle in on ourselves, enjoying the now rather than contemplating the risks of the future or remembering the past and so convinced that nothing can reach us." Justinus shrugged, he thought himself a man to look to the future and realized that many would consider him to be an alarmist or war monger. It was sad that many seemed to lack the foresight needed to make decisions for the long term, necessitating the use of strong Dictators to take the helm, who by their own desire for creating a dynasty, a legacy, let their entitled children rule after them and crumble politics into a bed of scandal and sycophants. "But Hannibal crossed the Alps - with Elephants." Justinus mused to himself, it was one piece of history that fascinated him and he greatly respected the man known as Hannibal Barca, no matter how much he despised him also as a enemy - even a nemesis - of Rome. Yet the simple fact that one man, leading an army, managed to do such an impossible feat while the Senate debated on where he was going to attack while simultaneously ignoring all the signs he WAS crossing the Alps as being an impossible thing made up by liars and traitors made it such an important example of how politics can become overused, overindulged, even exploited by foes and if it occurs again it could have even more dire consequences, it would destroy the worlds perception of Roman invincibility, cause uprisings, desertions even another civil war. Everyone would try to exploit the chaos.
  7. Mord

    Two Senators

    Justinus listened to man speak of his similarities with some interest, but more or less this was idle small talk and while it was certainly an easy change of pace from the usual politics it was still idle small talk. He was getting to know his fellow senator and that was important as well as letting Varus know more about him, it was a fair exchange he supposed for improving their relationship, and it didn't hurt to be in pleasant company. "I'm not sure of your question, when I am not working everything else is my free time. Though I suppose, before the Senate I was the Primus Pilus of the first Legio for several years... I served as a Legionary in varying positions for near three decades before that." His military record was hardly a secret, in fact it was the opposite; he wanted more people too know, he was proud of his service and knew that it was looked upon favorably in Rome. Though he didn't specify his Legatus as Cneaus Flavius Alexander Germanicus, he admired the man but he or his children had rivals in Rome so it's not necessarily to his advantage to boast being a subordinate to the man when his renown as a subordinate was limited to being a less than noteworthy officer. "I'm afraid there isn't much to say of my life besides that. But I am interested to hear you speak, the position of Praetor is a honourable one. I hope you perform well in it. I wasn't aware you had a daughter, what is her name if I may ask?"
  8. Ailbhes life was a confusing mix of wonder and terror. She had never before seen the marble structures of Rome, its glorious purity shining in the Sun, its immense size and the size of its structures almost defying logic. Yet there was also the terror, of not understanding what her captors said or ordered and being beaten for it, eating food of dubious quality and sitting cramped in a locked dark room, forced to waddle through people in similar straits to relieve herself in a small hole apparently for draining water. A rare treat was when they got to go outside, they walked out and were shoved into small groups or cages near and out of sight of the stand, it was a opportunity for fresh air and sun, but waiting outside she soon desired to once more return to the interior. It was too hot here, the sun too bright, and though she noticed it getting cooler it wasn't winter yet and then she knew she would dread being taken outside and forced too wait, and idly wondered if her toes would freeze off, with little protection from the cold from what remains of her clothing and the ragged overworn clothing, of long faded dyes and poor stitching, only worn when she wasn't on sale. Upon first entering the city, after some weeks she was taken along with others to some sort of exhibition in which she was supposed to demonstrate her skills. Yet, she assumed for being a woman she wasn't allowed over to the metalworking area and couldn't understand anything she was being told, so they gave her a designation. She wasn't sure what, but it was likely someone worthless, she half expected to be shoveling shit off the streets in no time. But it didn't happen, instead she was cycled almost every other day onto the block, where bored looking short people in robes made bids for slaves. She was never bought, sometimes she was presented in a fabulous manner and even allowed some cosmetics - a comb and a wash basin - to prepare. The slave driver tried to make a good show of it, but people ignored him or otherwise approached with idle interest, and she guessed it was because this wasn't an uncommon occurrence and she wasn't a rare commodity. Other times she was grouped together with a whole group, and a sign quickly roped around her neck, this was happening more and more as the slave driver wasn't getting luck in selling her as anything else but a cheap, expendable piece of meat. A man - A celt or pict she assumed managed to half-mime to her explaining that if she wasn't bought here she'd be sold in bulk with others to a mine. It wasn't exactly what he said, she only gathered a few meanings and words from him but was able to piece it all together and create her own narrative. The prospect of being sent to a mine frightened her, she knew the Romans went under the ground and deep as well, in small unlit tunnels to gather heavy ore. It would be claustrophobic, back breaking work and she knew she likely wouldn't survive for a year working in those conditions. With this realization she stopped attracting attention with her defiance, she contented herself with scowling under her hair rather than directly in the slave drivers face, but also had a hint of fear that if she remained unnoticed she would still be sent and wondered if she should be more defiant just to stand out as unique from the group. Though it disgusted her, she began combing her hair with her fingers and trying to make herself more presentable for every auction, even trying to appear friendly rather than defeated or angry. But no one bought her, no one cared. Even as she stood now on the block, nude as the day she was born, her face freshly cleaned and her curly red hair combed everyone just milled around like idiots. She felt her choler rising at looking at them and began to get frustrated at herself Are you really getting mad at not being bought like a mule? She thought, and decided that yes. Yes she was. If it was a better alternative to the mines, or to wherever they sent the slaves who never came back. In addition, they all looked so concerned with themselves and their own superiority. I'm going to die. I'm going to die because no one cares, they're all more concerned with how they look than me. She looked over to the slave driver who sighed and she saw it in his eyes; defeat. He spent enough time on her and was getting fed up with feeding her, clothing her and housing her. She knew for a certainty that, that is what she saw in his eyes. Pure, unblemished terror blossomed in her as her heart sank into her stomach and a volcano of frustration bubbled up into her throat, she clenched her fists and looked down on the ground trembling slightly as the slave driver gestured to her to follow. But she wouldn't move, and when he grabbed her she pulled away with fury and a short scream of frustration - and despair. Apparently startled at her reaction he hesitated, glanced at the crowd of eyes now on them and grew angry himself, likely from embarrassment as he grabbed her by the back of the neck; she flailed at him but he was too burly and strong for her to fight back against and pulled her down and back to the corral where they rest were kept. He threw her down in it and grumbled moving away. She wasn't alone, but it was close enough as she scrunched into a corner and held herself, the rage was still there, she needed to hit something, wanted to destroy something. But she couldn't, she felt helpless, was hopeless. I'm going to the mines. Or the arena. I'm going to die. She tried to appear tough, even making herself act angry, but as she hid her face under her hair she let her tears fall and sob escape, even as she beat her fist on the ground in frustration.
  9. Mord

    Two Senators

    Justinus searched his mind for the answers to the mans question and found them to be dull, he said as much but also that he didn't think that was a bad thing "Well, I enjoy exercises, as you must know from outside. Otherwise, I take care of my children and occasionally amuse myself with writings. Lately my mind has been to occupied to concentrate on my own leisurely pursuits." He kept his back straight, proud as he looked down to his hand and flexed it "When I was young I enjoyed a lot of things, games and such, and found simple things too boring. Now I am older, and feel older than I look and find something as simple as a glass of wine while watching my children play, or trying to teach them their lessons to be relaxing and reassuring." He looked back over to the man and took a moment to examine him, he was patrician in his features and close to an age of Justinus, he didn't know much about the man but he supposed that these meetings were the opportunities to rectify that. "And you? What interests you?"
  10. "You speak highly of this Cleisthenes, it sounds like a Greek name, I spent my boyhood in Athens and find the Greeks to be well versed in subjects of philosophy. They seem to have a natural affinity for it." Justinus kept his tone neutral, to imply that while he was praising them they weren't superior to Rome. He himself felt that they were, at least in those subjects... Rome was always a hungry wolf prowling it's borders for conquests and once conquered, it brought prosperity to both Rome and the new province, it was Romes destiny to rule, not sit and think as months or years go by. As they reached the end of the steps, Justinus enjoyed the summer sky and air and stopped to take a moment to observe is surroundings, looking at moving about their own business as they left the Curia Julia and at the guards positioned around the square in their regalia. It was all familiar sights but not necessarily welcome, it reminded him of idleness. Fearing an end to the conversation without any real purpose, Justinus glanced back at the Curia Julia, the magnificent marble structure is a heritage to Roman supremacy and glory, he felt is heart lift just gazing upon its purity lately home to corruption in the senators milling about and braying like donkeys. "What do you think should be done Senator?" He used the mans title as he turned his hard gaze back to him, speaking with confidence "With Rome, I think we are growing too complacent in our own golden era and the hard questions aren't being asked - or they are, but end up getting lost in the rhetoric that follows. Moderati, Publici, Defensores... Are we dividing more and more? Or perhaps I make myself a fool with such words, an aging body and mind reminiscent of a Roma when we stood unopposed in the world. But I think not, look now how we have an Empire to the east, the Germans remain defiant, the Dacians wrought horrible casualties upon the Legions before being subjugated. I do not want to see my children, or yours, inherit a legacy of enemies on all fronts mocking Rome with their presence. You served in Raetia, so I think we can both understand that what extends beyond our borders are not idle threats nor minor nuisances. Yet what is done? Do we fortify? Expand? Stay in our lands and reap the bounties they provide? I find very little comfort as of late, in the men who behave in such a manner as too benefit only themselves rather than Rome." Justinus kept his voice calm, slightly low and casual though in his mind he was raging. Plump senators jockey for greater wealth and position, but their gluttony will end Rome, he couldn't lie and say that wasn't selfish in his own goals, but the continued survival, prosperity and glory of Rome was essential to the legacy he wanted to set down for his children.
  11. Justinus felt a tinge of amusement, the sky was the limit was it? It seemed childish her notion of ambition and aspiration, that she could do anything she wanted because the sky was the only limit. But no goal? No future? Her mention of being interested in people and motivations made Justinus curious, perhaps cautious. "You don't bore me. Not now at least, you've the blood of a true Roman with what I've heard, your two values; Family and Ambition, and never believe that an 'underdog' can't rise high, Rome wasn't built by Patricians or Plebians, by top dogs or underdogs, just two Brothers with a dream and the determination to see it through." Justinus looked away towards the road and let his lips curl upwards in amusement. "Nothing stops a Roman from achieving what they desire... Anything we never had we took; wealth, territory, the Sabine women... Now the world... So if I can give a word of advice, don't let anything stop you and focus your aspiration on a goal rather than the skies limit." Justinus felt disappointed, strangely, mostly in himself for being some brazen in saying such things, typically people were more coy and didn't speak with such honesty. Not in Rome anyways, but perhaps she could achieve something great? Perhaps her sons may one day bring glory to Rome, and her ambition now would be the reason for their greatness. Justinus felt it a waste of resources to stop trying to improve oneself to ever greater heights. "But now I've said too much, I suppose I should be going now. Perhaps I'll come visit Aulus again. Thank you, for your reception, Oriana Laecania."
  12. Mord

    Two Senators

    Continuing his run was difficult, he finished a total of five laps before the wound in his hip threatened to collapse him, the sirens call of the warmth inside the Thermae called out to him. So he made his way into the building, limping slightly. Having giving his clothing already to the bath slaves he went straight to the Tepidarium to loosen his muscles before the bath. As he entered he scanned the room and quickly spotted Varus on one of the benches, he wondered where he should sit, side by side as equals and friends? Or perhaps in a position not unlike two negotiators discussing a matter? The man appeared friendly enough, so the former choice wasn't adverse to Justinus and the latter might offend, yet one may interpret sitting closely together as conspiracy for friendliness, or an eagerness to gain or show confidence with a person. In the end, he decided to sit beside him, but at a distance away, about half an arms length so that no one could come between them but neither were they pressed shoulder to shoulder, it was a casual sort of friendliness, continuing the conversation they began outside. "I see you are enjoying the warmth, comfort is as much needed as discipline after all." Justinus turned to face the man, "So, what shall be our topic, or would you rather bask in the glowing heat of the Tepidarium in silence for a little longer?"
  13. Justinus paid more attention to his speak of Raetia, he found too himself too involved in the goings of the Legions than really mattered, perhaps it was simply a by-gone instinct of thought from the years he spent in the legion. Yes, that was most likely it. "The twins are nine, old enough for their studies to advance before they marry in a few years. Lucius is my oldest at thirteen, and has the bearing of one who prefers to stand strongly and proudly, though some day the hot blood of his youth will cool and he will be wiser for it. I was actually considering sending him as a pupil shall we say, of the Legion." All were truth, he had no reason to lie but didn't necessarily reveal everything, in fact he hoped to set the stage for Lucius to become Tribunus Laticlavius to a legion, or Tribuni Angusticlavii, military service always grants prestige in Rome, even to the pacifists. His mind wandered back to the mans earlier mention of the quaestorship, and he put more thought into his mention. Was it an attempt to gleam who he supports? If Justinus desired it for himself? Or whether or not Justinus would support him? He didn't quite know, it was always interesting when people put an important question such as that out seemingly at random, it often invoked a response without really understand why the question came up, Justinus was cautious but wasn't adverse to stirring up the pot. "How is Titus? He must be growing strong, I can sense pride in your voice. He'll be a fine lad I'm sure, with a Father such as you, with such a decent career and many more interesting prospects in the Cursus Honorum."
  14. Justinus watched as the young woman approached him and made it clear her intentions to walk him to the gate, it was wrong to deny her the respectful action to escort a senator, though he was typically one to act independently even when it bristles others as it was a good way to demonstrate ones own autonomy without turning into an act of defiance, but rather a way to demonstrate a lack of ignorance. Though in some cases; including politeness, it was better to drop the political method and let the person lead you as though you were clueless of the way. "Thank you, if it is what you wish I will not deny your company, and yes, meeting with Aulus after many years was pleasant enough, he is a good man, though between you me; a bit stuck in the past." Justinus was momentarily worried that his comment might cause offense, though he could hardly reason why he would be, the opinion of an equestrian girl hardly mattered, especially one whom is likely far from the politics of the senate. "Well, I hope your walk was lovely enough, its a temperate night and pleasant." He walked forward, instinct driving him to seize the initiative though he did so slowly to allow her to quicken pace and lead. "I am curious of one thing, Aulus has no other children it seems, so what will you do with the estate when it passes unto you? What are your ambitions in life?" It was an honest question, he found many Romans had many different aspirations, he was sure his own children each had a different role in life but they could do whatever they wished so long as it benefited the Familia, and for their loyalty to always remain with their blood. What would she do? He wondered? Most likely marry someone and start a new family with the modest estate passing to her descendants, it wouldn't be a wrong choice but justinus found it unimaginative.
  15. The dinner was largely uneventful, Aulus was as he remembered though perhaps a bit older but that would true for himself as well. He enjoyed his meal and the conversation as basic as it was. Justinus had the feeling that his host was a man on his deathbed who wanted to reminisce of his younger self. Stuck in the past Justinus thought, though he did so with as little contempt as he could muster, it was more pity that he thought it, men who lived in the past oft had poor presents and no thoughts towards the future, mostly he thought Aulus was bored and hit the pinnacle of his ambition and thus had nothing to do with his time besides talk and meet old comrades. Despite this, Justinus felt strangely grateful for the invitation it wasn't frequent that he got to saw a familiar face, nor take a break from his responsibilities - of which there were many. Though his thoughts wandered throughout the dinner he maintained his focus upon Aulus whose conversation largely consisted of talking about skirmishes, military life and other brothers in arms, though he did inquire into Justinus' health and family and Justinus informed him of his wife and Fathers death, but proudly spoke of his children "Lucius is a fighter. I suspect he'll be a fiery young man soon and will need a tempered wife to curb his worst tempers, he takes great interest in fighting, sports and pays little interest to other studies, though he retains quite enough to satisfy me. Gaius and Junia are twins, a gift of the gods. Gaius often wants to act like his older brother, but the boy is of more a... Scholarly disposition, I might send him off to Athens to learn Greek and philosophy as my Father did to me, Junia will need a husband soon as well, she is precious and innocent yet, I do not find myself eager to see her grow older and open her eyes to the ugliness of the world, but it will happen and all I can do is prepare. Still, Aulus, I am here for you and I am interested in what has happened with your life since your retirement from the Legion." Justinus listened to Aulus recount his story, the birth of his daughter, her marriage (and death of her husband), the death of his own wife which Justinus sympathized with, he knew the pain of losing ones spouse. They talked for what seemed to be hours, but really only lasted over the course of the meal. Justinus waited for Aulus to rise before he did, and the two men approached each other, grasped hands and embraced for a moment before saying farewells. Aulus looked for his daughter to see his guest off but Justinus stopped him "Shes out for a walk remember? I suspect I'll see her when I leave, thank you for the dinner, I will pray to Scalpis for your health and sacrifice to Jupiter and Juno for your fortune and future." He nodded once to the man before turning on his heel and leaving through the door into the humid night. He looked from his left to right, expecting to see Oriana somewhere on the grounds. @Sydney
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