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  1. Aulus wasn't entirely sure how he'd heard of the young Athenian - he was the client of a friend of a friend - but he had enough recommendation to at least be considered to tutor Titus in the finer points of rhetoric and philosophy. If Titus didn't follow in his father's footsteps, Aulus would be surprised. He could go into law, he supposed, or take a full military path, but he had three or four years yet before he had to make that choice, and in the meantime, learning the art of oratory and rhetoric would stand him in good stead whatever he chose to do. He looked up as a slave appeared at the door between the tablinum and the atrium. "Domine, the philosopher is here." "Send him in." "Yes, Domine." There was a very slight hesitation in the slave's voice but the man withdrew before Aulus could query it. The reason for that hesitation became obvious as the slave reappeared with a stranger in tow. He didn't appear very Greek - in fact, he looked almost British. "Cleisthenes? Of Athens?" Aulus said, coming to his feet behind the desk. @Jacob
  2. May 74AD The Aventine Baths were some of the best in Rome, and right on Paulus' metaphorical doorstep. And, like the other baths, the patrons needed only to pay an as in order to have access to the full glory of the Roman bathing experience, from the tepidarium to the caldarium to the finely decorated frigidarium. And if that wasn't enough, there was a library and palaestra (exercise ground) too. Paulus, not being a scholar, ignored the library in favour of the baths. It was hot work, overseeing his staff and organising a decent auction (today marked the fifth copy of the Boy With a Thorn in his Foot that Paulus had seen this month, and today's offering had been a particularly bad copy of the original statue - the original was probably shoved in some back room in the Emperor's palace). Now, if some of the statues here came across his threshold, he might turn a decent profit. The one over there that pretended it was Plato (and was probably some totally unknown Greek instead) was a far better copy than the anaemic thing he'd seen this morning. "I don't suppose that really is Plato, though," he found himself remarking to the man on the bench next to him as the slave massaged his shoulders - true bliss, to be under the hands of a skilled masseur! @Jacob
  3. January, 73 AD There was wine; there were delicacies to eat, and there was far too much paperwork. Marcus Cominius Cilo thought to himself that had he realized how much paper, and how much attention to detail, was required for the family business, he might have told his father that he was simply staying in Greece. Just a little bit more, he told himself. The important things; who was waiting for the Joy of Venus’ special cargo when it arrived from Alexandria; the Joy was late, so Marcus would need to tell the scribes to send those few clients notes. The day-to-day business he could let the freedmen handle; they’d lived with it, some of them, longer than he had been alive. But the special business was family business. A glance down the list his slave secretary Fronto had left him in the morning showed a good day; most payments made on time, no one needing to be made an example of -- yet. There were people who were approaching their limits, however, and Marcus was quite ready to pay them a visit. That part of the business he did not miss taking over from his father. He looked over at the bed, and saw Cleisthenes, his lover, there, regarding him rather than the book he had in his hands, and a slow smile formed on his lips. “Just a little more needs be done….” @[Cleisthenes]
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