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Beauty last won the day on January 29

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  1. Beauty ~ staying but currently Away due to health issues ~ keeping: Nymphias, Aculia, Tiberius Herius Bassus, Titus Aspanius Lupus, and Manawyddan (for Event) dropping: n/a
  2. “Yes, like Caesar,” he said sarcastically, looking down at her and trying to fight back a laugh. For all her seriousness, there was some strange innocence to those words. At least, the way she said it. He’d met important government officials of Judea, certainly not the Caesar himself. Scribes played a very important role in his country, a similar way that senatores did in Rome. But Bassus did not long for his old life, he simply went where life took him. There was no point wanting anything. “A very important text written by important Jews or their god, depending on who you talk to,” he simply explained to the young woman, soon entering into the kitchen. The coolness of it certainly took away every bit of heat that had been prickling against his skin and making him feel more like a roasted boar than a human. He copied the way Safinia placed the leeks down. He’d cooked for himself before, he wasn’t a novice when it came to cooking but he certainly was not as skilled as someone who was a cook or their assistant. Bassus waited for her to continue her work as he looked around. Kitchens where he was from was set very differently but being rather adaptable, Bassus learned quickly to accept it. “You must be quite the lucky young woman working in the shade all day,” he said, folding his arms. His hands now smelt of leeks. “While I’m sure you are fully capable on handling yourself…” Young people liked hearing that sort of thing. “Anything you’d like to know about this place? Or who to avoid when the races get really rowdy?” It was always good to give a head’s up or see if one of the newest members of the White Team was missing something that they otherwise wanted to know. @Liv
  3. Bassus didn’t doubt that the establishment took a lot to keeping run, most businesses did. Bassus’ own family had owned lands, one in which they cultivated into an orchard to earn more coin than they already had. Admittedly, Bassus did not like Gaia’s brother, the owner of the brothel. There was something off about him and the unhappiness of the prostitutes in the work place left Bassus with a bitter taste in his mouth. But the man had money and was a born and raised Roman citizen, and with a touch of power came evil. “My dear, these claims are sorely mistaken,” he said, seemingly coy and swirling his drink before downing it. “Certainly my stunts, my moves are all real.” She wasn’t entirely wrong but the people weren’t fond of engineered games, they wanted something real, not fake or they got bored, and that was what Bassus liked to give them, if he could. He’d give a trick or two for the people to gasp before moving his chariot in a way to entice cheers. “You sound like you could use a visit to the circus maximus and see the races for yourself and if it looks rigged to you. I tell you what, I’ll give you the perfect seat, perhaps next to the infamous Aelia. She often gives us a visit.” He nodded around him. “It will be a day away from all this and locking arms with notorious company.” He then reached for some grapes. “And when that time comes, you ought to give me one of these midwifery literature,” he said, deeply interested in what she had stated before. He did not have many female friends, and much preferred them too to his male ones, so he took a woman’s friendship where he could get it. “There are some Jewish passages that state a midwife knows whether a child is a boy or girl based on where there face is confronting. A boy looks to the ground because he was made from earth and a girl upwards because she was made from a man’s rib. Are you made from your brother’s rib?” A mocking jest towards her brother. @Joaquin
  4. “May I?” the man said and Nymphias nodded her head, crouching down felt rather uncomfortable, feeling every bit like a toad. The moment he showed her the bronze coin, her mind went swimming elsewhere, even if she fought to pay attention. “Quadruplets,” said quietly Nymphias with a nod of her head. She didn’t know what a “prow of a galley” was but took his word for it so she nodded again. And then the rest of what he said made little sense to her, she phased out. Numbers and coins were not her forté, sewing, dancing, and pretty things were. If one looked at Nymphias, she would have been noticeably bored out of her mind but trying to pay attention for her own sake. It was important to know Roman coins and handling money in general. “Four quadruplets are same one asses,” said Nymphias with a nod of her head a third time. But then her mind wandered elsewhere and blurted out: “Are you in love with my sister? Do you have woman you love?” Was it improper to ask such things? But love was such a fun topic to her, not coins and surely they were finished talking about coins? @Sharpie
  5. The world glowering escaped Nymphias’ understanding but the rest of the woman’s words made some sense to the girl. Raise one’s voice, speak up, stand straight, stop looking so hurt all the time, Romans really did think they knew everything about life. Her domina, as well as the rest of adult Rome, knew next to nothing about life at large, being cushioned by riches and touching shoulders with polite society. And still Nymphias listened because no matter how old she felt, she was really just a child still and looked at everyone else older than her to tell her what to do and how to think. Nymphias let out a sigh, perhaps it was her who knew next to nothing. “I don’t have tears to wipe off,” explained Nymphias, her hands gestured at her eyes which were completely dry, no matter who sullen she looked otherwise. She cried going to bed, waking up, and looked a little lost when out of the domus, simply because she was a young girl trying to make sense of everything and survive. “You say you want bounce ideas with me,” said Nymphias. She hoped she would be able to prove her worth. The faster she did that, perhaps the faster the family would free her. “I am very good with ideas. I have a lot of… image in my head.” @Joaquin
  6. Any day could be her last and it could very well have been the last day walking in the markets, smelling baked goods being sold and seeing all the things Rome had to offer. She didn’t have the time to enjoy the world around her, as captivating as it might have been. She had a job to do and had to do it well. Her coin purse clinked as she walked, safely tucked where no one could reach it, and a basket hung against her bent arm, not yet full. Her eyes followed all the items and things laid out at stalls. One shopkeeper was busy talking to another man, both engrossed in a conversation deeper than Aculia’s insecurity. Colourful, well-made dresses and jewellery were laid out for all to see. Aculia’s hands gently caressed one of the dresses. She’d never truly dressed in anything pretty before, having lived on a farm and been a huntress, and then later a homeless woman in putrid rags. Clothing had been about practicality, not beauty. While the man was distracted, Aculia contemplating shoving the dress into her basket and briskly walking away. But it was much too large, instead her eyes settled on a shimmering necklace, which she quickly picked up and shoved somewhere that no one would see it. She had money but it was for another purpose. She turned her body to continue, expression blank, and immediately, her eyes linked with someone else’s. She stood there stunned. Slowly, she took the necklace out of its hiding space and put it back. She opened her mouth and then closed it. Shit, she thought. “I put it back,” she said calmly. This would reflect poorly on her master and in turn, make him angry with her. “Just don’t tell him about it.” By him, she meant her master. She feared him more than anything else. Note: What Aculia is wearing
  7. Aculia hopped into gear, walking swiftly like a startled rodent and placed the plate down in front of her master before hiding her hands behind her back. Standing tall, she said nothing as she hid the cut on her thumb in case he thought her incompetent or unable to do a job. She liked to think of herself as more than capable, not weak and powerless as others might have thought she was as a voiceless slave, but being underneath her master’s roof made her second guess her abilities and her worth as a person, no differently than being abandoned more than once had done the same. She was taken aback when he asked if she’d eaten or drank but did not show her surprise, instead her features were neutral. She’d expected the worst. Yelling, a brutal beating or death but instead she read his words as concern for her well-being. When she was first his slave, she had been terrified for her life but as he did not kill her, keeping her alive and well-sheltered, she believed him somehow generous. She was disgusted, at first, at her own feelings because how could anyone with any bit of self-dignity feel warmly towards someone like Marcus Barbatius. “No, domine,” she said honestly, voice lifeless and avoiding eye contact. “I wanted to be able to do whatever you asked of me without interruption.” She placed her basic needs aside in case she had to attend to his. What would have happened if she was in the middle of a meal and he needed her? “I won’t pass out, domine. I will eat later tonight when all your needs are met.” She’d been hungry and without food before when living without shelter, this paled in comparison. To her, she now lived in a palace with regular feasts. “Would you like some wine?” @Atrice
  8. The girl looked to Titus with pleading eyes but Titus felt nothing. To him, she was just a commodity. Not even worthy of breathing the same air as him or calling herself human. His initial reaction, which was the very one that Vibia got, was to laugh. And so, he laughed. It was not warm or hearty but instead a quick, demeaning laugh. “Entertain me?” said Titus, he sounded almost as if he disbelieved her. “How do you suppose that you would entertain me in a way that countless other women have not already?” His brows rose as if to emphasise his point. To him, most women were the same, each not any different from the other, only some were more obnoxious than others. And uglier too. Men were of a different breed entirely unless a slave or freedman, then he was as good as a woman. Still, she’d likely seen half of Rome’s richer men unclothed, if not more, but Titus wasn’t a man who kicked up a fuss if a woman wasn’t a virgin. “Very well, let’s see how entertaining you can be then,” he said, no real emotion to his voice and waving his hand at the slave girl, who then pushed herself up and rushed for the door. Her body rocked from side to side like she was at sea, her feet couldn’t hold her body with all the fear she felt pumping through her veins. The door slammed shut and Titus returned to his seat casually, folding one leg over the other. He sized up Vibia’s body, looking her up and down. “And you will keep the wig on,” he said, or rather demanded. “So, entertain me.” He sat there, practically waiting. @Sara
  9. Titus nodded, non-judgemental. The more Marcus spoke, the more Titus found that he agreed with the man. Titus turned to look up at the building, it was humble but a home nonetheless. Titus’ own home was lavish but simply because he liked to live in luxury, though he ironically kept his money all for himself. Titus stepped into the man’s home after Marcus did and he looked around the place, not necessarily inspecting it or judging but out of habit, studying his surroundings. A man’s home said a lot about him. The house revealed nothing about Marcus’ nature, however, making the man only more of a mystery to him. The slave present was quiet and obedient. He eyed the male slave at the doorway, admiring the man’s physique. Regardless of whether or not the slave was within earshot, Titus spoke up, returning to their previous conversation. “You ought to try playing with their minds a little,” said Titus, who, unlike Marcus, much preferred playing with a man’s mind, the way a lion played with its food before devouring it. “Violence is like the grand meal and playing with their brittle minds like the appetizers beforehand. One is the act, the other its foreplay. Though violence has its perks, I’m sure, you ought to come to my place for dinner and I’ll show you just how I break a man’s mind from the inside.” It wasn’t just slaves he did it to but his sister as well, who he was cruel to one moment and then kind the next, a cycle that kept her loyal and locked to him entirely. “I was thinking of trimming my hair as well,” said Titus suddenly, rubbing his chin and feeling the prickles of hair against his fingers. @Atrice
  10. He had a way of making her feel desirable without even offering him her body. He didn’t seem to mind that she was not yet ready for such an endeavour with him and with the way he brushed her hair, she blushed, more than she had ever blushed before. Her stomach twisted in knots and she began to relax again. She lowered her head shyly, absolutely captivated and eating every single world he said. It wasn’t that she did not want to go further when Helios, more that she wasn’t ready. She needed womanly wisdom, the advice of an older and much more experienced woman. Someone who would tell her what to do and what to say when she did get to that point. She didn’t want to disappoint. “I like the kissing and I like being with you,” she admitted. She could awkwardly admit it ten times over and feel the exact same way every time. “But when we… It will be very special. I want to cherish you too.” She then wrapped her arms around his head, hugging him closely. In her mind, they were destined to be together forever. “Thank you, Helios. You are most thoughtful man in Rome.” Erea, or now Charis, would love him, Nymphias thought. @Atrice
  11. Nymphias worried for the boy. What if the charioteer was mean to him? Her domine never was cruel, nor was his wife but they were stern and had many rules that made very little sense to Nymphias. If she ever had the ability to write in Latin, or at all, she’d have made a very long list of their rules and read each and every one of them back, just to show them how stupid they sounded. But then she noticed Azarion look her up and down before chuckling. Nymphias breathed out of her nose like a horse. Was the charioteer, right? Was Azarion flirting with her? When she wasn’t moping, she liked to delve into her imagination where half the men of Rome were fighting for her affections but she wanted to be ever faithful to the radiant Helios, who she’d just met and barely knew as a result. Then he pointed down at his ankles, showing her a tattoo on his calf. She tilted her head, trying to get a good look at it. “Did you get hurt?” she said, believing that was what he was trying to say. She hadn’t seen him twist his ankle but then again, she’d been flat on her bottom and terrified. “What if you tell the man that you try saving me? And that your ankle hurt trying to saving me. Maybe he will be not more angry but less.” @Chevi
  12. Holding the leeks, he followed after her and headed towards the kitchen. He remembered when he would return home in Judea, sweat embalmed on his body from his land’s heat and the sweltering kitchen’s heat sticking to his clothes. “Everything” could have meant anything, it was fairly vague but then she went on to elaborate and he nodded his head in what could only be read as genuine interest before she turned the tables on him. “No,” he said amiably enough. “You could say I did a bit of everything as well.” He’d been well-off in his “past life”. He’d been many things as a slave, from an object used against his will to an accountant. He admired her work ethic and the skills she’d developed throughout her young life. But he supposed she didn’t want to hear about that, that he had been a slave once, though it was likely obvious with hints here and there if one squinted hard enough. From the scars beneath his close to, perhaps, his name. It wasn’t that he hid the fact that he was a slave, he just never mentioned it. “My family owned an orchard,” he said matter-of-factly. He turned to look at the young girl, a smile still on his face. “They were scribes too and so I worked under important people. But life has a funny way of shifting our journeys. And so here I am and you are stuck with me.” He nudged her playfully. “At least, until you decide to get rid of me, that is. Earth you are, and to earth you will return. Have you ever heard that before?” @Liv
  13. Beauty

    Beauty's Plotter

    @Sharpie I would love one and was hoping they'd meet at some point! Feel free to start one if you wish to/have any ideas . Otherwise, I don't mind starting. Aaaand posting a sad gif because I can use some more threads/plots for Bassus and Aculia (esp. the latter)! #shameless.
  14. Trying to teach Germanus a new word was like trying to drill a hole in marble with a fat, blunt thumb. And he spoke so loudly too, which only irritated Aculia and wave him off. He was a lost cause. But a woman could only cook quietly in a small kitchen for so long. She enjoyed any chance she got when out of the house and buying supplies in the markets. Remaining inside only made her feel more alienated from the world, unable to see Rome’s liveliness, and seeing only her master, tending to whatever needs he had, only made her see him most hours of the day and, thus, somehow see the human, not the monster. Though she thought of escaping at times, it was better than freezing on streets and eating discarded foods from the dirty pathways just to live another day. She justified why she put up with it all. And just like most days, she was “confined” to the kitchen, chopping away at some tomatoes when, in her clouded thoughts, she hadn’t been paying attention and cut her thumb. The blood began to pool and she sucked at it before quickly finishing the small meal she’d prepared. Setting the knife down and taking the plate, her thumb stinging all the while, she became nauseous as she softly tip-toed throughout the home to where her master was. He had worked a long day and was likely hungry, she hadn’t eaten yet. She wanted to make herself available. She had been in his service for a year, while she was subservient, which had never been in her nature before, she still found herself testing boundaries. If he became angry that she dared think of him before herself, at least, she knew. She didn’t say a word, she just lingered by the door and waited until he noticed her hovering with a vacant look on her face, holding some food for him to eat. A peace offering that said she was more useful to him alive. @Atrice
  15. If she was shaking, it was barely visible as she stood rigid and tall. Her eyes were staring forwards, practically past the two male customers and her master. She held onto the jug of mug tightly, so tight that her knuckles were white and the muscles of her hands were growing tired. She did not dare look anywhere specific or say anything. Any little cough, sniffle or movement would annoy her master. Annoying her master meant the possibility of death. The men in the room had no idea what those hands were capable of, what she’d seen him do. As the the blade rested against one of the men’s neck, both men were oblivious as to what those hands had seen. She was zoning in and out, her attention was mystified and the world hazy. The mention of dogs made her snap into the real world, everything suddenly becoming material. She’d once dealt with dogs when hunting and had seen deer die by her arrows but seeing people die was different. The idea did come into her head of trying to get a quick word with one of the men for help but that was out of the question as intervention could go awry and be of more danger to her. And so there she stood near to the door, glazed eyes staring unnervingly with a lost look in them. So quiet, so still, she was practically invisible. @Liv @Sara @Atrice (cameo as per requested by Atrice!)
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