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Mid-July, 75 AD It had been a few weeks since the earthquake that shattered Rome, although he had heard that other parts of the nearby country had been hit far worse than the city. Still there was rubble here and there and some buildings, that had been too old or too badly built, had crumbled. Luckily not the little insula he shared with his son! Lexus had been fine the day after, it seemed, although a bit shaken. Alexius hadn’t even been at home when it hit, he’d been at the ludus with an arm wrapped around the divine body that was Annis. As soon as he was able, he’d returned to his son and they had talked things through and went out to help where they could in the city. Now that was a few weeks ago though and people had worked together to rebuild what was broken. Life went on in Rome, as it always had and always would in this eternal city. And he had returned to the ludus more than once to help out there too. Not today though; instead he went to visit one of his most familiar thermae, the one that was near the ludus and in the same region. The bath too had suffered some damage, but most of it was working once more and he thanked the gods for that. He hadn’t thought much about what happened here so many weeks ago, when he met the handsome young Florus. They hadn’t met here, actually, but he had smiled at Florus for the first time and then caught him to share a drink. Sadly, after Alexius had dared to touch Florus’ hand, the youth more or less bolted out. He wasn’t very experienced and even still a virgin. Pity with that, Alexius would have loved to teach him a thing or two about pleasure. Luckily, there were plenty of fish in the water in Rome and Alexius wasn’t bored or unsatisfied. Now he was back at the thermae, going through the less damaged baths and finished with a nice massage. After this he returned to the changing room and put his tunica back on – in the summer there was no reason to wear breeches, it was far too hot in Rome this time of the year. As he strapped the leather belt around his waist, another person entered the changing room from the baths and Alexius looked up at him briefly… and then looked again at the very handsome and very naked youth over there. What a sight to behold! “Florus!” He exclaimed with a grin, recalling how they’d talked about drinking together again sometime, “How good to see you again.” @Ejder
Late April, 75 AD It had been a good day at the Ludus Magnus. Alexius had really begun enjoying it there. First there was lovely Thessala, who was a great friend and a great sparring partner. She seemed to enjoy fighting with him too. And then there was Annis and how could he not adore Annis? Gods that woman was just sexy and fun and… so many good things. Their medicus was nice enough too, Alexius liked him and really, all the gladiators, it reminded him of the good old days and it was never bad to watch them train up close either. Surrounded by dirt and sweat, but for some reason, he liked it like that! After sparring with Thessala today, he went to the nearby public baths together with some of the other gladiators, to clean up before going out tonight. It was late afternoon and as far as he knew, Oriana didn’t need him tonight. She hadn’t said so. They had fallen apart lately… so he thought he might just go out and enjoy a drink or ten and someone lovely too. There were other people in the baths too of course and Alexius noticed a young man looking towards the area where the gladiators were bathing and joking between each other. He almost felt as if he was one of them, but of course he wasn't. He could leave. They would have to return to the ludus, they were slaves. Alexius gave a young man watching them a smile, while he dried his body with a towel and got dressed in his blue-grey tunica and short breeches again. Then he exited the baths and stood for a moment outside the gates, stretching his arms and legs a bit. Gods it had been such a good day today! Fighting made him feel alive! As he stood there, the young guy from before walked up the road towards where he stood, probably actually planning to walk past him… but Alexius saw the way he looked earlier and honestly… the youth didn’t look too bad himself! “Greetings... I think I saw you just before, didn't I? You saw something, I know that.” He'd been naked, after all. Alexius asked with a playful tone and a wink, when the younger man was close enough. @Ejder
The end of 74CE It was strange to be in the domus without the dominus there. It was not Tranquillus' natural state to be alone in the household. He would have followed his master like a shadow to his visit to a friend's house, except Titus had another job for him to do. This morning, Tranquillus had to accompany Sulpicia Flacca for a visit to a relative's home. She was too young to wander Rome unescorted, and guards or a female body slave alone were not good enough company for a girl of noble birth. So, believing that he could manage fully well without a body slave for his visit to Longinus, the head of the household ordered Tranquillus to escort his daughter instead. The tutor would not have been much help in an altercation, but he was tall and stern enough to look the part. The visit was shorter than expected, as the relative was not feeling too well. Tranquillus and the young mistress returned home by lunchtime, and since the dominus was still away, there was not much to do for the body slave. He sat and read, organized things, finished some errands that needed finishing, and felt somewhat awkward with the unexpected afternoon off. Tranquiulls liked to plan his days off ahead of time. How inconvenient. When Titus finally arrived home, with a new acquisition in tow, the look on his body slave's face was not unlike that of a household dog perking up for his master's return. @Liv @Ejder