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  1. It had been a long journey but a welcome one, from Britannia's chill to the now unfamiliar sun of Italia. Ostia had never looked so welcoming, and Aulus was impatient for the ship to dock. He would take a horse for himself and Felix and head straight up the Via Ostiensis and change out of his uniform once he got to Rome - and how he hoped that his family would be there and not at Baiae! He hired two horses, one for himself and one for Felix (who had developed into quite a decent rider over the years). He would send Felix to the house to let them know, and to bring him a toga - he had a clean tunic with him, but it was forbidden to wear armour within the pomerium, the sacred limits of the city, and so he resgined himself to having to don the hot unwieldy garment that was the mark of the citizen. It felt like an eternity before he was back in Rome itself, the toga (one of his father's with the broad purple stripe of a senator) heavy around him, with the end over his left arm, and tangling around his legs in a dreamlike familiar way. He had no time for the sights of the city, and the Porta Ostiensis was the nearest gate to his home in the Piscina Publica; Felix had reported that the family were in Rome and anxiously waiting for his return. It seemed like that dream as he walked the familiar streets until he turned into the street where his father's house stood. He could not be denied entry for long; the door-porter knew him and it was mere moments before he was in the atrium where his parents and wife and children were gathered. He greeted his father first, as was only right, and then his mother and only then could he turn to his wife, who looked as he remembered her. Perhaps a little older, maybe more careworn, but still the girl he had met in Greece, in the garden of her father's house, dressed in a simple tunica. He had been enchanted then, and found that he still was, despite the stola she was wearing now as the mark of a Roman matron. "Horatia," he managed, past the sudden lump in his throat. @Sara
  2. The sun's punishing rays made sweat drops bloom on Titus' forehead like so many miniature flowers for the third time in just as many minutes, and he wiped them off with the back of a calloused hand. Was it really absolutely necessary to replace the oleanders and croci with new bulbs on one of the hottest days of the season? It wasn't domina doing the (literal) dirty work, so expecting her to take the weather into consideration was too much to ask. And he wasn't even a gardener, by Jupiter! He hoped, however, that he didn't do such a poor job that it would elicit punishment. As if on cue, the mistress's voice sounded from inside the house, calling his name. Titus set the spade aside against one of the columns and wiped his hands on his tunic; when he'd put it on that morning it had been a clean if nondescript grey, but all the digging and pottering about had stained it black and brown and several places and his hands were faring no better. If only there were a basin with water nearby... It would not be wise to keep domina waiting. Resigned that this was as clean as he was going to be for the time being, Titus quickly made his way in to the atrium, trying his best not to track dirty footprints inside. As expected, domina stood tall and proud in the atrium, but she was not alone: another, very familiar slave stood as well, appearing to await orders. Why would she have summoned Valeria too? Titus could not afford to waste time thinking about it. Taking his place next to Valeria, he bowed his head and lowered his gaze to the floor. "You called, Domina?" @Beauty @Joaquin
  3. 62CE, somewhere in Cappadocia, camp of Quintus Flavius Caesar Alexander Augustus Felix was so far from home he was not even sure he would ever make it back alive. Honestly, he had not even been sure that he would make it here alive - and yet, here he was, in the camp of the Augustus himself, along with his master. They made it. They got out of Rome, trekked across Italia, got on a ship, and made the journey across the sea (Felix decided he liked the sea) all the way to the eastern provinces, where they endured rough travel and many dangers until they managed to find out where the camp was currently established, waiting for loyal refugees like Aulus. Gathering forces. This faraway bastion of loyalty and order welcomed the exiled noblemen with open arms, and finally, after weeks of living outside the law, things were restored to their proper place again. Which meant that Felix was once again a mere slave with no particular importance. Aulus was given a tent the moment he presented himself to his emperor. He deserved it, and more, for putting his life on the line for the cause. The tent was like any other military officer's (space was in high demand in the camp), but it was a home away from home, and more familiar to Aulus than it was to Felix. Felix, on his part, did his best to find his bearings, making sure to do what he could as a body slave for his master's comfort. He got food, got the supplies needed for the tent from the men responsible (even a new set of clothes for Aulus), and once everything was arranged to the best of his abilities, he found himself a blanket and a rug, and made himself a cot to sleep on outside the tent's door. Back in Rome, even a body slave would not have dreamed of sleeping in the same room as his master unless he was ordered to. He would sleep outside, close enough to be called on if needed. On the road here, there were not many rooms to speak of, and appearances to keep up as two traveling companions rather than nobleman and slave, although the farther they got from Rome the less that pretense was needed. Felix liked Aulus, but he did not have illusions about his place. Besides, the nights in Cappadocia were comfortably warm. @Sharpie
  4. Later that same day, after Secrets and Garden Games Hector had an unhappy look on his face. Not because that other slave Helios had visited his master today, because clearly Tertius hadn’t even touched the other handsome slave… and it wasn’t because of the news either. It was probably no secret that Hector didn’t like how his master looked at Charis, since that could threaten his own position in the household. No, he was unhappy because his master was unhappy. Tertius had shared a little with Hector about what Helios told him; something about Charis wanting to control Tertius and she obviously couldn’t. It didn’t make Hector more fond of her, only less. Tertius had had a cup of wine to calm his nerves, but it didn’t help. Not even a massage from Hector helped. He would have to speak to Charis and make her understand just how inferior she was in this household and that if she thought she could control Tertius, she was wrong. She was very wrong! He could make her life miserable if he wanted to, but he had kindly allowed her to work in the gardens and he could tear that away from her. He could tear away anything that pleased her. He could tear her apart. “Hector, tell Charis to come. Alone.” Tertius finally said firmly to his body slave and Hector nodded silently and went to fetch Charis. Tertius still sat in his office, the tablinum, he hadn’t moved much since Helios was here. But now he stood and paced a bit around, feeling restless. Gods how stupid was that girl? She’d looked so fine and pretty at the slave market that day, and she had seemed to be a fast learner, but it was all a mask and she thought she could control her master. He inhaled a breath, tried to calm himself, but the more he thought about what he learned today, the more upset he became. Finally there was a gentle knock before Charis would enter the tablinum. Tertius sat down on the edge of the front side of the table. @Sara
  5. Only a day in Rome and Alucio was already beginning to feel the stifling confinement of city life.Too many, too busy, too much. His temples throbbed, and he found that he was exhausted not so much from any physical exertion like he was familiar with, but more so from the overly stimulating scenes of busy streets, and market places full of colours and yelling voices. It had made Alucio eager to get what he needed done and over with so that he could find somewhere quiet to relax.First, he made arrangements for his stallion, Nyxos, while he went about the town. The stable boy was tipped for his efforts, and Alucio promised him more to come in an attempt to keep his armour and weapons from going “missing”. After the stables, the baths had been his next stop, and truthfully his most anticipated. He’d been on the road for far longer than he cared to think about, and he could no longer recall his last proper bath. Washing in streams and rivers was better than nothing, but the hot, steaming waters and scented oils of the baths was beyond compare.Fresh and clean, Alucio moved to his final errand of the evening; to find himself some relaxation and pleasure. The Domus Venus was a nice establishment, far nicer than the whore houses he was familiar with. He was greeted at the door, a cup of wine brought straight to him at his request, a lead to a comfortable entertainment area, deeply cushioned lounges set out with a mix of slaves and patrons milling about. Alucio found a space for himself and leant back against the cushions, a tense sigh escaping him as he all but forced his tense muscles to relax.Alucio cast his gaze about, taking in all the options afforded to him; men and women of all stature and skin colour, all beautiful and appealing. One was even reciting poetry on the other side of the room, seemingly from memory, as Alucio failed to find any sign of parchment or a book open in front of the young man. The bounty hunter sipped slowly from his wine as he listened and watched, impressed by the ease that the slave showed as he flowed from one verse to another. He was handsome too, smooth, pale skin and supple lips, his body lithe but strong from what Alucio could tell. Intrigued, Alucio caught the younger man's eyes, raised a hand, and beckoned him over.Phaedo
  6. Date: Unknown. Likely 2008. Collected by Gothic. Characters involved: Drusilla (not Augusta) & Theodoric (not sure which one)Location: UnknownDate of collected thread: 05-06-2010, 04:31 PM Drusilla. Drusilla was quite sure she was going to be sick. With the entire colosseum jeering with excitement she hastily sought escape, heavily relying on the avid distraction of her mistress to go about unnoticed. Judging by the claps and noisy jingles of jeweled applause as the gurgle of severed flesh echoed, she had proven to have succeeded. She cascaded down the stone staircase with little regard to whom she managed to bump into. In all her haste Drusilla took care only to cover her mouth with a sweaty palm, the nausea concocting as liquid fire within her belly reminding her all too well of the rocking motions of the slave ship. Even after three years it was near impossible to forget such an acute occasion of sickness. The waters sloshing to and fro-- A grotesque hiccup erupted from her parched lips as she reached the open air of the stadium. The mixture of farm sweat and baked bread filled the air, though it was the pungent sting of blood that slammed her sensitized nostrils. Drusilla nearly gagged, rushing passed the passerbys to meet another flight of stairs. It hadn't beent he first time she had been forced to attend a gladiatorial spectacular on account of her mistress, and it certainly would not be the last. Drusilla had simply not expected her lacking toleration of grotesque bloodshed to cause such nausea. How often had she seen that same gladiator raise his weapon to slaughter the opponent, one after another after another? His dark, shaggy hair hidden underneath the helmet on some occasions, other times simply left to whiplash with his violent jerks of motion. Sweat would always leave his light flesh glistening in the brutal Roman sunlight, the sheen of those protruding muscles manipulating his imposing strength. Isis almighty, he was indeed strong beyond belief: she had heard various times he was of the Germanic tribes, a supposed "barbarian". It was no wonder he defeated every man he came against. But for how long? The steps were rickety now, but she could not bear to falter in speed. It grew dark, the overhead wooden flanks preventing the sun from penetrating. She was underground now, she knew. Underneath the stadium. Free arm reaching for the wall Drusilla slammed her back against its cool solidity. For what seemed like countless moments she simply began to breathe, inhaling with fresh hunger and exhaling the hopes of putrid nausea. Dark brown eyes shut themselves desperately, ample bosom heaving wth the unsteadied rhythm of her struggle for composure. Oh, but how the sight and stench of bloodshed made her quiver inside out! Any moment now and she would surely fall over from it... Theodoric. The fight had continued, despite the distractions that had been provided just moments before it was to begin. Masters of the warriors marched into the room in which they were held and ordered them to prepare. Cheers and chants rumbled the floor beneath the stadium -- surely Mars himself could hear the cries for blood. Theodoric was sure their demands would be met by the end of the day. He armored himself, standing in line with the rest of the men that were on his team -- the Greeks. Though few of the men in his team knew Theodoric, there were a couple that had fought with him and survived because of him. He spoke, commanding orders with his experience, and only hoped that they would listen. "When they come out, keep a tight formation. Whoever has the largest shields needs to be in the front rows, while everyone else crowds behind them. Do not let them get your flanks!" Several of the men grunted in recognition of his orders -- other simply nodded. In moments the gates opened, a contingent of ten gladiators spewing from beneath the floor of the arena. Theodoric ran out first, looking around to observe the crowds before walking before Caesar -- who was always in attendance -- to salute him. After the ritual bow and chant of "Caesar, I salute you!", Theodoric ordered the men on his team to circle up around him. Chants and roars echoed from the frenzied crowd, and in moments the 'Persians' emerged, seemingly from all sides. The teams were certainly unbalanced. Theodoric counted fifteen for the opposite team, several of which had bows and pilum to sink through the scantily-made shields his team possessed. The opposite team repeated the ceremony just displayed by Theo's team and then the "games" began. The fight took longer than Theodoric had expected. He either expected a quick victory, or quick loss, but was presented with neither. The arrows and pilum took their toll on three men of his team, but they managed to maneuver around to where they were no longer the defenders. Theodoric got ahold of a bow and with it was able to pop in and out of the wall of shields his men provided and take out the archers for the rival team; the numbers were even. Unfortunately, once the odds had been equaled, the men forming the wall charged off to face their enemies. Brutal one-on-one fighting ensued within the middle of the ring, with the six remaining "Greeks" fighting the 6 remaining "Persians" in hand-to-hand combat. Theodoric guided his blade through the cavities of the men that presented themselves as a threat to his life with relative ease. He had so much training in killing. In minutes the battle had ended, and Theodoric along with two other men -- the two that had fought with him three times before -- stood victorious. The populace of Rome stood and applauded their victory and Caesar, as a show of good will toward the people, allowed them to leave the arena alive. The gates to the under-works were wide open, and Theo descended. Tossing his blood-stained armor and weapons onto the table, he spent little time in the preparation room before turning the corner and heading toward the baths that victors were presented. Amidst his walk, he came across a dark, young woman, leaning against the slightly reddened walls, breathing with as much control as she could muster. He looked to her, confused why she was in the under-works. "Who are you?" He asked. "Why are you down here?" Drusilla. The abrupt call did little to ease her grueling nausea. "Who are you? What are you doing here?" Her heart leapt into her throat just then, the fluid-engrossed stomach of hers managing somehow not to wrench just yet. In a desperate feat of retaining composure she slid against the wall to the ground, passed caring about the filthiness of such an act. Refusing just then to glance the stranger's name, not so much as catching a glimpse of who he was, Drusilla tucked her knees underneath her chin, letting her arms come about as her thighs brushed her bosom. She closed her eyes, continuing to breathe. "I'm no one of consequence", she snipped brusquely, still refusing a glance. "Leave me be. I'll not bother you if you keep from bothering me." Pride had no doubt stiffened her upper lip. There was no chance in this lifetime she would let a man of any sort, Roman nor Nubian nor Egyptian, witness her in such disarray. He need not know I've got my innards toiling like cattle , she convinced herself, gripping herself a bit harder about the knees. He'll not think I'm weak. Not Drusilla Sebervius Gemella--! The liquid fire within her belly quavered suddenly, Drusilla groaning aloud without anticipation. "Leave me be, won't you? I can do fine without your interrogation of my actions." She had meant to brandish this invasive stranger with her usual sharpened tongue, meant to send him away by mere means of her roughened tone. All that managed to be brandished, however, was the unexpected wretch sloshing from her mouth. Theodoric. The towering barbarian kept a steady, weary gaze on the young woman. It was strange for her to be before him. He could tell from the beads of sweat on her cheeks and the posture she held herself in that her stomach was not right. No doubt the fight had been the force of unsettlement. But why then would she travel downward into the stinking, hot, bloody caverns that the gladiators called home before and after the fights? Theodoric noticed the lack of commitment from the woman's eyes. She refused to discover where the voice she had heard came from. He was somewhat relived, actually; if the sight of blood and death made her uneasy, no doubt the blood spewed across the somewhat tanned skin of his own body would serve to propel the contents of her stomach further. Though, in second though, it was much better to have the contents of a stomach on the ground, than an actual stomach. The crude man chuckled at the thought as it passed through his head, only distracted when her sharp tone bit at his conscious. With two large steps, he placed himself before her... only to see her slide into a huddled position. At first, he had intended to help carry the woman from the under-works, but at the recognition of her rudeness, he was inclined to do worse to her. To Theodoric's people, it was not out of line to hit a woman. The man couldn't be sure how Romans looked upon such actions, but to the Sweboz, a woman was to hold her tongue. Then again, the woman before him was much darker in complexion than any of the women of his tribe. "You still haven't answered my questions." He stated. His voice was strong and steady, perfectly paralleling the stature in which he stood before the woman. Without any sort of warning, the contents the woman had obviously been trying so hard to keep down, spewed from her mouth and onto the brown and black sand before her. Theodoric dodged back a bit, trying his best to avoid any splatter. "Come now," he said, clearly aggravated, "get out of here!" With a firm grip, he grabbed hold of the woman's right arm and brought her to her feet, intending to drag her out of the under-works and into the clean air of the Colosseum. Drusilla. It was not until after the wretching of her tightened belly did she then begin to feel the slivers of slightest relief within. Temporary though it may have been, but relief nevertheless. Relieved and weak at the core. Oh, but how her rage flared when he grabbed at what did not belong to him. Drusilla struggled against his callaused, battle-worn grip as it threatened imprints upon her bronzed flesh. He was fierce and strong, this stranger-- The gladiator! Isis almighty, and he was splattered from head to imposing toes with the scarlet life force of his opponents, reeking of masculinity and the scent of a hard-won victory. Having but no choice to meet his gaze, glaring and speckled with spite though they both were, Drusilla had confirmed his identity. Only virulent irises such as those could been noticed from outside the arena. Which she was no longer standing above, by the looks of things. By Isis, I'm in the under-works of this damned Colloseum. I didn't even know where I was running to... "Let go of me!", she hissed, attempting to yank from his strengthened hold. The putrid mess of her own doing had sputtered nearly the entirety of the lower half of her chitton, staining the amber cloth. "Just who do you think you are?! Let go of me...!" Her free arm was her right arm, thank the gods. If Drusilla had attempted to grab at the blade hidden within the loose confines of her sandals, she for certain to have been fumbling and causing an even greater disarray of things. Not that her holding the petty blade, a trinket kept for moments such as this {though she never truely believed she would need to make use of it in this Roman world until, quite possibly, the night of her planned escape}, made things any less dramatic. "Don't you touch me", came her virulent demand. Strange, for though every bit of force she could muster was intended to be emitted from her voice, Drusilla feared she had sounded meek. Unsure, lacking in confidence: vices she had been taught as a child never to exercise. It should not have mattered that her heart was racing faster than a war chariot, the blood thrumming in furious course throughout her foreign veins. It should not have mattered that he, this Germanic gladior, stood even higher than six feet whilst Drusilla, in all her determination to be seen as equal of sorts, came no taller than five. It should not have mattered in the slightest. And yet it did. But alas, she had the prideful blood of Maximus Sebervius coursing through her, the unbending will practiced by Asenath's Nubia-Egyptian deities. She was determined. Frightened in the intensity of the moment, but determined. "I'll not tell you again to let go of me, gladiator. I need a bath. I need a clean chitton and a comb before the ending of the next games. My mistress will no doubt flog me senseless if she so much as glances my way when I appear as this." The blade did not waver, her dark brows intent. "Can you help me with my troubles or no?" Theodoric. Theodoric had no problem ignoring the majority of the demands from the woman; she was blowing hot air that couldn't hope to dissuade him from his plans to remove her from the under-works. Whether or not the woman had intended to bring herself to the under-works of the Colosseum was of no consequence to the Gladiator. His grip didn't begin to falter, despite the orders coming from the woman's mouth ordering him to let her go. As their steps progressed closer to the stairs that led to the ground-level, Theodoric found it more and more difficult to bring the woman forward. The man's muscles were tired and worn from his battle, and his trip to rest and relaxation in the hot baths that were provided to "prestigious" gladiators such as himself had been delayed. His steps suddenly halted, his eyes falling to the woman staring up at him with contempt. She had asked if he was going to help her. Strange, he thought. His hand let go of the arm it had encompassed within its grip. His eyes -- which had been fixed on the set of stairs that led upward -- fell to examine the cross expression the woman displayed. Fire lit her eyes, but did little to sway the disposition of the man. "If you want to bathe, follow me." He stated. "If not, turn around and head up those steps." His arm lifted upward, pointing toward the stairs that the pair had been headed toward. Theodoric didn't expect the woman -- whose name he still didn't know -- to follow him, but it was of no matter. He just wanted to rest. Drusilla. He had finally released her arm. Thank Juno for that! "Of course I'll want a bath", she replied, wavering in her strength yet again. Silently Drusilla smacked herself for such inconsistency in the confidence of her heart being reflected through that of her mouth. Damn and blast, this certainly was not the time to appear weak. "And… a comb. A-a-and a new chiton; o-only if you happen to come across one, th-that is." Isis help me, I'm stuttering! At his insistent arm of branded muscle shot towards the uprising of the stairs she shook her head, sighing. Adrenaline was slowly yet surely being replaced by her self-assurance. Slowly. "I truly hadn't even realized I was in the under-works", came her muttered confession, dark eyes glancing up to where the light of the Coliseum poured in streams. "Hadn't the slighted inkling. But gods, how I was sick! I cannot stand the sight of carnage for sheer sport." Drusilla glanced his way, the gladiator's, matching his gaze. How stout and sure he was, unfailing in imposing power. She wondered briefly if he had always been so. With a sigh she set her hands upon her hips, slipping the blade back into the tattered sole of her sandal. "Gods, I'm filthy all over! I'll certainly take to that bath now, gladiator—err, what was your name?" She extended her hand, as she had a horrid habit of doing as a child, and offered the giant a kindly smile. It was surely the least she could do after nearly retching all over his feet. Theodoric. She stood before him, still defiant in her posture, though her words lacked their former conviction. The woman was strange. Theodoric had seen all sorts of people during his time as a gladiator, but none had the speech or the mannerisms this woman displayed. She sparked the sense of curiosity within him, and amused him to a slight degree -- despite the fact that she had annoyed him just moments prior. He smiled somewhat, amused by her stammered demands. "I'll see what I can do." His tone was solid and unwavering. At a surface glance, no compassion or kindness could be derived from what he spoke -- but it was there. Theodoric wasn't used to speaking with people unless it was about preparing for a fight; it was strange for him to be in the midst of a conversation... or something somewhat like a conversation. He stood still and silent, towering several inches above the dark woman. His eyes caught her hands moving forward, but noticed the blade had been tucked away. With somewhat stiff movement, his right shoulder heaved up to bring his large, calloused hand to meet hers. "Theodoric," he spoke softly. "I am known as 'Theodoric of Germania' to them." Deciding he didn't wish to wait for the woman to reveal her name, the gladiator turned in place and began to walk back toward where the two had first ran into one another. His steps were large and brisk, bringing them to a small opening of marble amidst the dirt and blood-stained halls of the under-works. Royal guards stood watch just outside the entrance to the room, looking at him formidably. "Who is your master?" They asked, though they knew who Theodoric was. "Master Aurelius," he answered in a low voice. The two guards looked to one another and nodded in unison, stepping away from the entrance. Theo waited for a moment until he saw the young woman come up behind him. His eyes followed her until she caught up to him, and he walked into the baths. It was a strange thing that the Colosseum had baths provided for the gladiators; then again, many gladiators made many men very wealthy... and some of the gladiators themselves were rich warriors. Theodoric walked into the plaza of stone and steam, the dark woman just behind him. Men in their natural form -- and three or four women, mostly courtesans -- were both walking around and lounging in the hot waters. Theo walked passed the larger of the three main baths and headed for a secluded room to the rear that was reserved only for slaves of his master, Aurelius... though he was the only of them still living. Stepping through the doorway, mostly shrouded in steam, he turned to face the woman, whose name he did not yet know. "If you wish to clean yourself, I hope you do not shy from showing your flesh," he stated, looking only to her eyes. "It is either bathe in here..." he turned to look out toward the main baths. "or out there with them." With that, Theodoric shed the linen shirt from his back and dropped the small cloth that wrapped around his waist. Drusilla. It was not her intention to squeal like a child. As a girl raised in a household full of men Drusilla knew quite well the basics of the male anatomy. For the love of Osiris, she had seen her share of bare men. Did not one take it upon themselves to clean their dirty bodies in the baths, where privacy was a privilege to no one? Blatancy of the being was no new ordeal. Yet she squealed. "Oh…!" In a hasty attempt to relieve him of her eyes she glanced away, her hands clasping behind her back. She wondered how he did not seem to mind being entirely bare before her. "I don't want to bathe out there for certain", she mused hesitantly. As if to reconsider the option Drusilla took a final glance backward, allowing her dark ears to catch sounds of the previous baths behind them. She was never a coy girl, yet the concept of opposing sexes who were not married being in the naked company of one another never managed to make much sense to her. Perhaps it was because she understood how individuals could not become flushed with embarrassment. Or maybe due to the fact that such a thing was natural, to be bared. Just as quickly as she had turned to look behind she cleared her throat anxiously, facing front again. All too rapidly she knew the secrecy of her nakedness was better off in the view of a single man. Better the gladiator named Theodoric than a dozen or so other gladiators she had never met. And he, this Germanic giant in all his grandeur, seemed no exception. He had shed his linen clothes and such with an anticipating quickness, now bare as he was born, muscles most likely aching for the steaming delight of the expansive water before them. Perhaps it is simply me, she grumbled silently, letting her eyes glance his way once more. Even with the veils of steam shrouding the atmosphere every last contour of his chiseled flesh managed to be in lucid view of her wandering irises. When their gazes met, Drusilla was quite sure she would collapse in a heap. "I've come this far, I s'posse. No point in leaving when I know what'll happen if I do." Drusilla sighed heavily, the lethargic fumes of heat filling her lungs with a soothing sensation. Her unsteady hands worked at the clips of her chiton, managing after an impossible handful of moments to let the cloth free. It was loose about her curvaceous form now. As she reached within, prepared to lift the chiton above her head, Drusilla flickered her attention his way. "Don't you watch me, Theodoric", she implied tartly, dark brows furrowing. How funny she must have looked. "I'll not have you observing me before I've touched that hot water. Go on, look away, won't you?" Theodoric. The giant of a man -- as he must have seemed to the young woman -- stepped forward toward the water. There was not a care on his mind; his exposed body was nothing to bring shame to his heart, or flushing redness to his cheeks. He was born as he stood, why should he be ashamed to show his body? Steam floated atop the hot water, serving as a sort of blanket that covered the dark bottoms of the bath. Theodoric had not had intentions of watching the woman undress; he could have any woman he wanted, whenever he wanted, he did not have to watch her to please himself. But, her voice beckoned his eyes to her body as she flipped the cloth from her torso. A low chuckle spread his lips as a foot lifted and squished through the settled steam and into the hot water. Despite the sudden cry from his feet, Theodoric continued his descent into the bath until the water rose to cover the majority of the parts of his body that declared him a man. He turned back to see the young woman approaching the water. Her arms slightly covered her breasts, while her eyes scanned the surface of the waters and then flicked to Theodoric with fury. He laughed slightly at the strange actions of the woman. "I trust you do not fear water?" He asked, thinking it would be startlingly amusing if she desire to bathe but feared water. He turned away from her, noticing the presence of his eyes upon her brought about discomfort. She was a beautiful young woman... despite the color of her skin and the strange actions that commanded her. But she was young, and he was tired. "I am here to bathe," Theodoric stated to himself, pressing away any inappropriate thoughts that had entered his mind. He walked to the back ledge of the square, 8 ft by 8ft bath, and slowly lowered his tired and wounded body into the heat of the water. The small cuts and scrapes that had been left from the fight earlier burned in the heat at first, but afterward were soothed. He looked about his own body, observing the cuts, paying no attention to the woman for the moment. Drusilla. As if to defy his bemused mockery, Drusilla slid into the bath in one long, slick movement. She made sure her momentary glare found way to his eyes. "I'm not a child, you know", came her snappy defiance. "Water does little to strike my fears, but I doubt a tribesman such as yourself would understand. We Egyptians know that the Nile is our life, is the key to our prosperity. I worship the water as far as you are concerned." Perhaps such an earthly element frightened these Roman children, the lot of them filthy and ungrateful as it was, but no daughter of the Nile. No woman of Egypt found her life force anything less than miraculous. She flipped her head away, facing the opposite end so as to expose her back. Gods, it feels so nice in here! How wonderful it must be to have one's own bath… The delectable heat of the water engulfed her as she knelt within its tepid depths. Almost immediately the seemingly therapeutic had begun to work away at the kinks of her lower back, to ease the tension within her once adrenaline doused nerves. And to think she had only meant to come and wash away the putrid remains of what she retched! The bathhouses were never so delightful. A lithe hand of caramel tones smoothed the lengthy kinks of her dark hair over one shoulder, exposing the smooth textures of her bare back. It felt strange washing with such comfort, as if she were a noble of some sort, one of significant Roman importance. Last time I enjoyed my bath I was thirteen, she recalled bitterly. The tepid water splashed quietly, its aqueous relief doing wonders to the parts of her it slid along. Right before we were enslaved, Mama and I. I supposed I don't even recognize comfort when I have a chance to snatch it. Like Theodoric. Just when she was doing so well to keep her mind off of him. She did not realize the smirk daring to play upon her full, bronze lips. Such a strange name! I wonder what he would think of mine… oh, probably no different than any other Roman in this damned empire. Every last namesake sounds the same. Gods, but would he care? Has he ever met another Drusilla such as myself…? It was queer for her to be thinking of him, his own presence sharing the same space of hers in this heated seclusion of a bath. The air was thick, insinuating the results of frenzied bindings. Drusilla sighed slowly, calmly. What did he look like bathing, this delightfully hot water slickening the sharpened dips and jagged contours of his steely frame? She closed her eyes, hissing with a silence at her own wonderings. It surprised her how lecherous she sounded just then. How very, peculiarly lecherous. Arms encircling her shoulders, Drusilla glanced back a fraction or so. She convinced herself it was merely for the sake of curiosity that she did what she was doing now; nothing more. Curious of his doings, whether or not he was minding her. Whether or not he was… Their glances met after a moment or two, Drusilla's heart nearly coming to a halt. Dismissively she flashed her attention back to her side of the wall. "Maybe we should come to some sort of an agreement", she offered anxiously, pulse growing rather rapid as she felt and heard him creating ripples throughout the bath. Something adventurous within her nearly begged for him to be moving towards her, battling that other half of her that demanded virginal piety. "You keep your eyes away from me, and I… w-well, I w-won't get that queer feeling that t-tells me you truly are." The stuttering simply had to stop! Theodoric. The heat of the water sent floods of pleasure and relaxation across the sculpted muscles of the warrior. Minute by minute he remained still, letting the bubbles of air created by the fresh water pouring in work against the stiffness the battle minutes before had created. He leaned back against the marble-encased wall of the bath, taking immediate note of the sudden contrast in temperature between it and the water he sat within. Short, quick glances brought his eyes from the water to observe the smooth, bronze skin of the young woman that stood with her back poised against him. Despite what he had told himself, he could not help observing the body of a woman that had such a curved figure; no woman in Germania could compare with the exoticness this woman before him brought forth. As time increased, Theodoric found himself wondering more and more about the young woman. Surely she hadn't intended to become sick and wind up without a stitch to cover her body as she stood before a weary and looming Barbarian gladiator. "Her name," he spoke within his mind. "I have yet to learn it..." With quick thoughts, he pondered over the possibilities of names that would match this woman's appearance and personality. Her skin reminded him of the women he had seen during his brief stint of a career in Egypt. Gods help him if she were Egyptian and retained her culture; he would have no hope of pronouncing her name correctly. His eyes fell away from a quick examination of her curvaceous figure, and instead inspected the dirt that sat upon him still. Quickly standing -- with a slight wobble -- Theodoric focused his attention on a small plate to his side that held bathing oils and cloths that were used to fragrance more than clean. The cloths were enough to get the dirt from his wounds. The pressure of his movements against the water -- and the consequent sounds -- must have grabbed the attention of the young woman, as she turned slightly to address the gladiator. She turned back around before speaking. With slow, steady movements, Theodoric passed through the hot body of water, coming closer and closer to the young woman that seemed to be fighting back some desire to turn and look toward him. Silence controlled his tongue, and he did not speak; in fact, he made as little noise as possible as he moved forward toward the girl. Smoothing sliding up behind her, he held out an arm, reaching it somewhat around her so she could see his hand. Within his palm was a small cloth and a cup of oils. "That I truly am what?" He asked, speaking a bit softer than he had up until that point. Drusilla. She had not expected her carnal half to have actually received the better end of anticipations. She inhaled raggedly, struggling her damnedest to keep from displaying too great an insinuation of apprehension. Surely she was antsy enough without him nearly breathing over her. Juno knew what she would be feeling if he came any closer. In his large smoothly-callused hand outstretched the bearings of his terms of peace, the miniature capsule of… oils, was it?... and a clean cloth propped to entice her bathing needs. Drusilla was quite sure she could have thrown her arms around him in sign of appreciation… as she had done before with others… but she refrained. It was not safe for the sake of her innocence. “Um… thank you”, she whispered, daring a moment to tilt to the side and let her irises match his a moment. Freeing one clasping arm she gingerly accepted the items, carefully leaning forward to set them upon the edge of the stone. As she went their flesh brushed… or, perhaps as she found more accurate, slid… and not without the slightest sense of smoothness. Drusilla wondered nervously if he had noticed, his outstretched arm barely slipping upon the wet expanse of her midriff. She herself did not know the halt of her breathing until air escaped her. His tone was gentler now, far more so than the abrasive, chiseling sort it had been minutes before. "That I truly am what?" "Truly… well, I-I don’t know anymore." Quietly she murmured, hands encircling her frame once more, "I fear I've forgotten what I wanted to say." It was not until now she recalled how perilous the truth could actually be. She wanted with every truthful fragment of her body to tell him what he "truly" did; that he was handsome, far more than any man in Rome she had reluctantly come across; that his name sounded funny, despite what empowering etymology lay behind it; that his close proximity had to be what encouraged the constant stammering. Everything she could thus far recognize she admired in one uncanny way or another. Even his authoritative tendencies, a characteristic she never, with her current occupation in society, found remotely intriguing beguiled her now. It was then she sparked a strange sort of jealousy: how could he, a supposed barbarian, have accumulated so much more respect for his existence than she? What would I have to do to be as him?, she wondered, turning slightly back to him. "You're making me forget things, Theodoric", she whispered, not quite certain the imperativeness of her queer statement. "I'm not sure I like it. But… I'm not convinced it bothers me, either. I'm not sure of anything." Theodoric. He remained completely still behind her, the discipline he had learned serving his father and uncles in the dark forests of his homeland was evident in his posture. His eyes fell as the young woman turned to her side to take the items he held within his stretched arm. The harsh demands of the woman -- which had ordered Theodoric to avert his eyes from her flesh -- were still ringing in his ears; but, she had done nothing since entering the baths to dissuade the gladiator from looking upon her, or from approaching her. It was befuddling to the warrior that this young woman showed little fear toward him. To most Romans, he was a barbarian and therefore mysterious... something to be feared. Instead of fear, however, Theodoric thought he saw glimpses of intrigue lighting the carmel skin of the young woman standing no more than a foot in front of him. The quick friction of their skin caught the attention of the warrior. Despite his usually pale skin being tanned by the Italian sun, the contrast between his own skin and that of the woman before him was very evident, both in terms of color and softness. His body had been trained to kill, thus his muscles and skin were rough and ready for fighting. Though his arm merely brushed against her abdomen for a moment, he could not forget the soft, unscathed skin of the woman. But he did not act. Instead, he listened to her explanation. With a low chuckle, Theodoric spoke once more. "Well that doesn't help much." He turned slowly away from the girl, and began a slow, tedious walk across the bath and back to where he had sat before. The gladiator planned to clean himself, and allow the girl to do the same, and then relax as long as he could before having to leave. Despite the pleasantries permitted to him, Theodoric never forgot that he was still, in fact, a slave. Her words halted his progress once more. With a slight twist, his back bent, exposing all the delicate muscles that made his body move, bringing his eyes to look to her. The same low chuckle escaped his mouth. "What have you forgotten?" Easing the tension from his back, the gladiator turned his body completely around and faced her once more. Slow, lumbering steps brought him closer to her. "You are curious of something," he stated quite boldly, speaking of the strange way her eyes fell upon him. Drusilla. A smile played freely upon her full mouth at his inquiry. Gods only knew all the things she had thought, all the things she desired to speak; to speak of her desire, mayhap? Drusilla knew she could not so much as dare. Gods, but how she wanted to. The carnal-inflicted half of her character offered Theodoric that same smile, an inadvertent appreciation of his returned attention. "I don't really know what I forget", she replied lightly, shrugging so as to let a curlicued waterfall of black-brown twists spiral its way upon her back. The movements of her ample curves reflected a similar behavior to that of his owns strapping flesh, the tan-fortified muscle creating wonders as he went about the brief stretch. "Just things, I guess. Strange things that a virgin quite possibly has no business thinking in the first place." And yet here I am, she mused sardonically. Giving vague replies in a hot bath to a naked gladiator. I should have just been a harlot… Unaccounted flushes of tingles encapsulated her senses at his chuckles. Deep and rich as the soil of the Nile, fortified in a liveliness Drusilla did not doubt she could not yet understand while still so ripe into life. Odd that his uncanny laughter brought her to darkening blushes and such. And the way he speaks! One would surely think he has little to say of anything, Drusilla wondered, catching breath again as he encumbered to approach her. Or perhaps he is simply one of few words? He only speaks when spoken to… oh, Juno, he's so close to me. Why do I even care what he says, so long as I can hear him speak? As if to accuse her of dishonesty in a most amusing manner, the gladiator Theodoric mused with a half grin of sorts, "You are curious of something." The intent within his gaze encouraged Drusilla to shy away, yet she refrained. He would have her defiance in full glasses if he were to have it at all. "Does it startle you that I am curious of things?" Drusilla faced him entirely now, letting the length of what hair had not fallen upon her back cascade in front, doing well to cover the impertinence of her breasts. Her hands fell to her hips, posing impudently to match his unspoken valor. "Or would you rather I, Drusilla Sebervius, take what I am given without question?" Would you rather me be apathetic as you seem? She did not wait for him to respond immediately, dashing him a biting glance of her wandering eyes. "You inspire curiosity in me" she breathed, a sure-shot confession. "But do not ask me why; I told you, I've forgotten. I'll know something, but your presence pushes for me to forget, and I try, I truly do try to remember, but it's simply impossible with you so close and this languid heat wafting around us, as if it were some sort of intangible blanket threatening to suffocate my very common sense, making me stutter as if I were a madman—!" She was silenced abruptly, but did not mind. Not with his finger pressed so gently against her lips. Theodoric. Theodoric's approach continued until he again stood little more than a foot away from the young woman. The heat of the water seemed to increase with every foot fall against the marble bottom, pushing steam from the surface and mixing it about the cooler, upper air of the room. Even if she were to turn in full expression toward him, Theodoric would barely be able to make out her figure... but that would not stop him from trying. With unwavering devotion he watched the movements of her body, and her eyes as she turned to speak. A virgin? The gladiator could see the youth upon the girl's skin, and across her eyes, but he could not have guessed she was a virgin. Though, perhaps, her piety was what reigned over her movements, and thus created a sense of curiosity with the seasoned warrior. He guessed that she considered him just as strange as he thought of her; two slaves -- as he assumed a woman with dark skin would be in Rome -- under the same conditions, yet very unaccustomed to one another both in actions and in speech. It was a musing thought. For a time, she did not speak... verbally at least. His pale irises caught the fluttering movement of her own, and could hear everything they had to say of her thoughts. Their vitality only increased with each inch he moved closer. A grin played on his lips. She turned toward him, posing a question, but not allowing him ample time to speak. The warrior forsook the control he had put upon himself earlier, and allowed his eyes free roam over her turned body; peering through the mist that surrounded them. The woman's staunch, nipping glare served well to halt the words that were to flow from the warrior; for the first time she had beaten back anything he was to say. An inward laugh reflected his delight in the boldness Drusilla displayed. Drusilla. It was nice to have a name... though, in a strange way, Theodoric considered leaving behind the exchange of names. She would know him as 'Theodoric the Gladiator' and he would remember her as... curious. As if to fill the gap of silence the gladiator failed to act upon, Drusilla spoke once more. Words spewed from her mouth in a mockingly similar way to the foul contents she had expelled nearly half an hour before. The more she spoke, the wider Theodoric's smile became. Despite how little he knew of this woman, she had a skill in speaking her mind... though it seemed to him she frequently forgot what it was she had intended to say and muddled around what her point had been. But, as she explained, perhaps it was just within his presence. He wondered, how would she act if in a familiar setting? Seemingly ending his thoughts -- and her words -- the battle-hardened warrior delicately lifted an arm and put the foremost of his fingers against her lips. Her lips. Wodan, god of all the world, must have delighted himself in the creation of such capacious, enticing lips. Not much made the warrior weak; nor did much to chop the pattern of his breathing, but such delicate contact with this young woman's lips brought forth several unexpected reactions. "You speak too much," he spoke softly. His eyes, wide and intensive, yet peaceful, demanded her attention. Carefully, as if his life depended upon it, Theodoric rose his left arm and gently whisked his fingers against the front flank of Drusilla's hip, sliding them up to her stomach where they rested. There was a bit of fear in her heart, he could see it through her eyes, and he could hear it through her breathing. But within that fear, excitement quaked, shaking the blasts of exhaled air that beat against his poised finger. "Tell me of your curiosities," he began, speaking softer than he had yet. "I will not ask, for fear of you forgetting." Drusilla. If it weren’t for the stone edge of the bath, she was for certain he would have collapsed under his touch completely. Drusilla instead faltered with wavering footing, catching herself after a moment. The water delayed its speed. Even with her clumsy fumble she did not dare leave his gaze. Not just yet. “Tell me of your curiosities”, he told her., his voice beguiling her further. As his strengthened, battle-ridden fingers sought the flat plane of her belly, the quietest of whimpers erupting from her lips. She did not dare tell him that just so happened to be her spot of sensitivity. It was a strange sort of fear, one that intimidated her innocence yet intrigued her adventurism. That sensual half: the half she never found the need to express. Not until now. Struggling to gather the wits about her, Drusilla cleared her throat. It was difficult to remain as headstrong as she intended to be in front of him, this gladiator. Difficult indeed. “I… I’m curious as to why you hardly speak”, se started softly. “I talk a great deal, I know, but it is as if you would rather not say anything. Ever.” Her eyes fell halfway below to the expanse of his broad, tanned shoulders. Eyeing him once as if to ask permission, she let a lithe hand of hers wander forward to experiment his arms. Bands of rigid, marble muscle solidified against her touch—as to why, she could only imagine. She continued speaking, seeking to retain composure even as she explored the masculinity that was in reach. Her tone was less strained, less of a rush. It surprised her that his presence could encourage her tranquility as well as enthusiasm. “I try to think you simply you only speak when you are spoken to, or if you have reason to, but I am not so sure still.” A sincere giggle, eyes flickering up to him again. “You are difficult to comprehend. As is your laughter! Well, actually, it’s not quite a laugh, is it? More so resembling a chuckle. It certainly is not a giggle. Men do not giggle, do they? Perhaps that is too feminine. I fear you have never giggled in your life, have you, Theodoric?” Her fingers laced upon his wrist, keenly observing the protrusion of veins and other such underlying strength. “Your chuckle makes me feel all strange inside, Theo. May I call you Theo, please? The syllables are so strange together: it amazes me. Hmm.” Drusilla sighed in a most torpid manner. Fingertips traced the soaked lines of his rough palm, now feigning smoothness with its damp feel. Quietly she wondered aloud, “Isis have mercy, you have such great, large hands! I wonder how many men you have killed with them? It is a man's duty to kill, to protect his family.” Perhaps that is why I never understood excessive bloodshed, she thought. Why slaughter if it is not to protect those you love? "Forgive me for being so talkative", she offered with another smile. Was it this heat that inspired her to be so unusually open? Or, by chance, was it simply the inquiry of Theodoric? "I have not been so befuddled with anyone in all my life. You are strange." As if it were a wonderful sort of thing, she giggled once more. Theodoric. A soft breath escaped her lip at the grace of his touch against her stomach, something that did not go missed by the attuned ears of the warrior. He stepped forward slightly, creating small quakes within the water that surrounded himself and Drusilla. Constant small ripples spread across the surface of the water in reaction to the pumps that brought a fresh supply of hot water into the small pool; Theodoric's movements only served to further enhance those ripples. His eyes fell down to watch the movements of his hand as it continued to play against the young woman's smooth skin. He wasn't entirely sure why he had sought such contact with her, but it was beyond thought at this point. She spoke, striking a small smile across the features of his face. The words that formed within his mind and which were about to be pressed from his tongue were abruptly stopped by the sudden presence of her small, soft hand combing across the muscles of his arm. Pale irises flicked from the motions of her hand to her eyes, and then back and forth several times before her continued speech called his attention to her. Apparently, the soft move of his finger across her lips did not serve to dissuade Drusilla from speaking. The words flowed from the stem of her mind and out of her mouth in rapid succession; this time, however, Theodoric didn't mind. He had come to grow a peculiar fondness for the sound of her voice. A large, swooping laugh filled the room with its vibrations, and even still afterward with small echoes that shrank and shrank until inaudible by human ears. The warrior could not remember laughing so deeply in a very, very long time. The presence of this young woman was refreshing... to say the least. "Who am I to decide what I am called?" His eyes fell to his wrist, where her hand played with the surfacing veins that bulged with blood. "If Theodoric proves too challenging for you, Theo will be fine." It seemed as if every exclamation this girl made brought a laugh from the mouth of the gladiator... something he appreciated, though he did not speak of it. "Wodan blessed me with a body to serve his will," he followed up her statement. "I have never killed a man," his eyes shifted to match hers, "only animals." Surely such a deduction was perplexing to the young woman, but to Theodoric it made sense. The Romans were not men; not when pillaging his lands, raping his women, and slaughtering the children that had only just begun to understand life. The criminals he faced in the arena were not men; they lowered themselves to be condemned by the Romans... what did that say about them? To Theodoric, killing a man insinuated murder... something he had not done. He smiled reassuringly. "It is quite alright. I enjoy your speech." With soft movements, Theodoric grazed his hand away from her stomach and up her side, dangerously approaching her breast before sliding over to her arm and up to her shoulder. "You wonder why I hold my tongue? I have never been one for talk, unless celebrating a joyous occasion. I speak only when I believe it is necessary, or proper to do so. I enjoy listening, it gives me a greater understanding of those around me." Quick thoughts jolted through his mind, bringing him to wonder how she saw him... how he appeared through her eyes. "We are one in the same, then," he stated, following up her declaration of how 'strange' he was. He thought the same of her. "When I begin to speak, I find your words or your actions halting the words. My eyes have moved more in these past few minutes before you than they do in battle. You, Drusilla, evoke just as much curiosity within my bones." Drusilla. To know he did not make much negativity over her talkative nature was undeniably pleasing, though not so much as the sensation of his skin upon hers. What is he imagining lay within there?, she wondered with apt interest as Theo's hand simply lay upon her belly. It were as if he were meditating whilst listening to her, his smirk posed near-permanently on his Eros' bow lips. Drusilla was forced to retain the abrupt intake of breath as his hand elevated locations. Please, touch me. "But at least I make sense of certain things", she persisted, voice proving her intensifying fascination with his current explorations by several more degrees. His delightfully strong hand had eased its way up the minor inward dip of her waist, missing the curve of her own breast by a hairbreadth. "You? It is as if you are quite normal, yet it is unusual to be so. Gods, you puzzle me to no end! And I do not enjoy being puzzled, Theo; not one bit. However, I'm terribly afraid I like this. Your perplexing characteristics rather captivate me. Are all your people so staid as you, so solid in thought and so very silent? It would seem you live amongst tranquility." How different from here, from Rome. She wondered if he despised the craze of Rome in a sense similar to her. Drusilla could not seem to contain her personal smiles just as he could his laughter. "I do like how you say my name; your native tongue sprinkles some sort of specialty upon it. These Romans have desecrated the title my father gave me." Impersonating sarcasm she muttered, her fingers taking moments to lace through his, "You should teach me you language at some point. Then, perhaps, I can bellow curses at my mistress." It occurred to Drusilla quite suddenly that she was supposed to be somewhere. Who knew whether or not the games had ended, whether or not they were still in the course of being spectated by the crowds? All she was aware of was her lack of concern, her dismissal for the impudent wishes of her mistress. I shall be as Theo and demand my honor from these cursed folk, came her conscience in a most refreshing defiance. Perhaps if I were a gladiator it would be far simpler, but this shall do for now. Being here, with him; this shall be fine. There was marking upon the front of his hand, between his knuckles; a scar, no doubt. It only made sense for a man of such a perilous occupation to walk away, if not be killed, with such permanent ribbons of battle. However, she found herself somewhat irked at the thought of him being harmed so deeply. "You have so many, my Theo." Drusilla released his hand just then so that her own would be allowed to prevail on a quiet desperation of searches. From his wrist again to the tops of his marbleized shoulders, the fortress of a neck to the bridge of his nose. She did not concern herself as to whether or not it was appropriate for her to be touching him so brazenly; there was a mission. Lithe fingers of caramel complexion smoothed over his jawline, her dark brows furrowed in bubbling anger. There were none upon his face save for the healing cut upon his straight, Acwellen nose. "Did you eradicate all of those gladiators who scarred you like this?", she demanded of him, eyes hoping to capture his with her serious intent. "Jupiter's teeth, you have so many on your body! Who marked you with their sword? Did you slaughter them? Oh, and here…!" As if to mimic its jagged display Drusilla let her fingers trace the imposing scar that dragged across his chiseled abdomen. An indescribably fury instilled within her just then. Who had dared to mark him like so? "I am almost afraid to observe your back", exuded her furious inclination. She glared up at him, an internal fire within her eyes. "And so this is what one must do, to survive a sport made of killing. One must sacrifice the well being of his body in order to live? All for the enjoyment of an emperor?" He had so many scars, though most were hardly visible. Some had been fresh, or cut anew to reopen a wound. It should not have mattered, for even she had earned her share of scars as a child, but not from mindless sport. "I hate it that so many have done this to you. How do you tend to your wounds, Theo? Tell me so that I might do better to help heal them. Men know nothing of nursing their pains." Theodoric. The striking smile that lit the features of his face -- a mark upon his complexion that was seldom seen by any of his fellow gladiators -- slowly diminished, though neither from her words, nor her actions. He simply tired of smiling. His eyes fell to the location of the large, battle-worn hand that encompassed much of Drusilla's shoulder. The difference in the size of his hand and her small shoulder was almost unbelievable. Such intriguing factors of differences in their bodies brought a swift movement to the gladiator's eyes, and he took delight in observing her body in its full, alluring splendor. She was a young woman, and possessed quite a figure for her small frame, but this did not seem to be the driving factor that struck interest into Theodoric's mind; though it did play a part. Her eyes put a pressure on his straying gaze as she spoke further of her desire to speak, and his lack of enjoyment with the act. He could feel her eyes pushing against his own, until eventually, he swept his eyes away from his inspections of her body, and the water surrounding it, and looked to her irises. "Normal?" He chuckled once more, though this time in mockery of her statement. "I am afraid neither of us could ever hope to be seen as 'normal' amongst these Romans. I am a 'Barbarian of the North'; skin white as the snows that peak the mountains, eyes wild and fierce as the wolves that hunt the forests." He spoke using the descriptions the announcers of his first fights had given, and then, his eyes scanned over her body once more. "And you..." his voice lowered, drowning the room into silence as he moved his fingers gingerly across her collar-bone and to the middle of her chest, just below her neck. "You are exotic; skin bronze like the shields of old, eyes deep and mysterious as the far-away oceans. The Romans could never respect or hope to understand the life that pulses within us." Teach her his language? She was a crazy girl; she hadn't the slightest idea how brutish and harsh his language would sound. It was not calculated and controlled as the Latin the Romans practiced; nor was it near as organized as the Greek their senators spoke. "Learning the language of my tribe would require more practice than I am sure you would be willing to give," he stated with a doubting tone. "Besides," he continued, "it would require steady contact between us.... I could die tomorrow within that ring." At the conclusion of his words, the eyes of the young woman fell downward to his hand that sat idly upon her chest. As if to break the silence that had surrounded them, Drusilla spoke of a newfound interest in the marks that littered his hide. Control staid his motions and speech whilst Drusilla moved her hands around his own and began their own surface scans of his muscled frame. The light touch of her fingers, and the smoothness with which her hands moved over the scars sent bolts of excitement through the gladiator. His eyes closed to allow his body to completely feel. As each hand moved to a new spot upon his body, memories flooded into the warrior's mind, reminding him of how they earned their spot upon his flesh. She posed her questions, seeming mildly aggravated that someone had dared swing a blade toward him. A smile broke his demeanor as he finger traced the fresh gash across his nose. "I killed those that came too close," he answered solemnly. His back. Though marks of war scarred the tissues of his arms and hands and shoulders mostly, his back carried the marks of his enslavement. Pride filled every jagged bump of destroyed skin... save for those left by a whip across his spine. How do I tend my wounds? His mind spoke quietly, repeating her question. There were a hundred ways he knew to treat any sort of ailment that could befall him if he were in the wilderness, where he could rely upon the abundant earth to serve him. In Rome, however, the cleanest of items were only slightly less dirty than others. "These baths are usually my treatment," he answered. "I know enough of tending to wounds, but these Romans have a funny sort of medicine that I do not take a liking to." Drusilla. Drusilla gave a long sigh then, her hands leaving him for the moment. "Everything here is so grimy. I can hardly stand walking along these streets, even though it has already been three years. There is just no growing accustomed to such filth." A momentary image of her home flashed through her mind then, sparking memories of her beloved city. She could not help but oppress a reminiscent smile. "Alexandria is nothing like here. I would give anything to go back home." In synch to her trailing recollections she glanced down to where his splayed fingers resided upon the very center of her chest. She had been minding his hands, the adventure they had coursed over the expanse of her dark flesh. What wonder do you have with me?, she had wanted to inquire. Only decency had kept her mouth shut. In the beginning of their acquaintance any contact such as this would have no doubt given her reason to leap away and warn him off with a ferocious glare. It had worked before, in the frenzy of the afternoon market. It would surely have worked here. But Drusilla knew quite well that the last thing she wanted was for him to be any farther away. This distance between them, trivial as if seemed, still managed to be too great. She delighted in the concept of being overcome by her carnal half, the side of her being that wanted nothing more than to feel what a woman should. Strange it was to desire such a sensation so abruptly, but her mind was made up; Drusilla refused to heed to the biting conscience that brandished the flag of her innocence. As if it was a curse of sorts. "Theo", she wondered the words of her mind. But it was not quite a question she intended. "Theo, my Theo." The phrase sounded so strange as she trailed off, voice growing all the more silent. A shame that she would quite possibly never see him again after today, after this moment here. Can he not be mine just for now?, she mused despondently, her eyes in quiet desperation not to reflect the sentiment within her heart. Isis, please; let me keep him for now, if never again. Just for now. Feigning a pleasant demeanor, Drusilla lifted her head to match his gaze. "You know something?", she began levelly, hoping for her voice to keep from wavering. "I think I am frightened. Terrified that your words could ring true, about you possibly meeting your last sword in the arena tomorrow. I think… no, I know that it frightens me. And there aren't very many things in this world that I fear, and yet, for whatever strange reason Isis has yet to reveal to me…" Briefly she turned away from him, dipping her fingers within that bubbling water so that he might not be able to differentiate her random tears from this wetness. As was habitual she dried her eyes quickly with the back of her palms. "Gods, this is ridiculous. I hardly know you and already I am behaving as a child. Oh, gods." In a feeble attempt to calm her anxious self Drusilla exhaled, allowing this lethargic heat regain its former potency with her as she closed her eyes. Oddly, it did not seem to be this external fervency in the air that consumed her right now. "What… what I mean to say is that I am afraid I shall never see you again. After today, I mean. Perhaps it has to do with you being so strange to my liking, or mayhap even because I have found someone who sincerely keeps me from being so lonesome after Mama was taken. I do not know. And quite honestly, Theo, I do not believe I care. It does not alter the fact that by this time tomorrow I'll be alone again." Her eyes glimmered his way again, finally. "That I'll be without you." Theodoric. "Alexandria?" His brows crossed in a mix of surprise and perplexity when her words hit his ears. "Strange that two people so different as you and I came to Rome from the same city." Quick memories lapsed through his mind, taking him on a short trip through time. The smells of the battlefield in which he met his capture were still all-too vivid... despite the years that had placed them in the past. His eyes, too, could remember the golden light that cascaded across the wonderful gem that was known as Alexandria, city named for the greatest general in all of man's history. It had amused Theodoric when he learned of such battles and generals upon fighting with the true Greek gladiators; his people had known nothing of the men of the Mediterranean or their wars. Home. The words brought a peculiar weakness to the large man's solid resolve. Though his mind often wandered back to images and memories of his home, he always tried his best to suppress such thoughts. It was torture enough for him to be stuck in Rome, fighting endless hordes of criminals -- and the occasional warrior -- until his death, but he considered it only further torture to let his mind feel a sadness for the life he no longer claimed. Theodoric knew that constant thought of his home and the life he missed would serve only to drive him mad. Forgetting the memories made bearing with his current situation that much easier... but he would never forget where he had come from. "I would give anything to return to my home," he stated, somewhat sadly. "But I fear by the time I am able to make an attempt, the world I come from will be all too much like this one." Her mouth uttered his name... softer and softer with each breath until she had grabbed hold of his attention and drawn him closer; if she were to speak, he would be sure to hear, despite how quietly the words were spoken. The tuned ears of the warrior seemingly turned toward the woman as she halted her speech, and instead let her eyes convey her emotions. The pale circles of little color that lit the orbs within his skull were not slow to take in the feelings she displayed, though he did not openly show he had understood her faltering gaze. "You know something?" Her eyes rose to meet his searching pupils. Ready ears heard what she had to say, a swift smile crossing his face at the conclusion of her statement. Her body turned away, forcing his hand to fall away, leaving his eyes to see only the rear of her figure. He took a step forward, choosing to remain silent as she expressed the depth to which her quick and momentous feelings reached. It was somewhat a surprise to the gladiator that the woman had grown such an attachment to him... and perhaps it was sincere, but then again, perhaps it was the excitement of youth bubbling over. Either way, he had decided he would comfort her. Theodoric continued his approach until the fronts of his legs brushed against the backs of hers. Sliding his hands from the surface of the bath, he smoothed over the tops of her buttocks, gliding over her back and to the tips of her shoulders. He spoke softly, "You need not worry, Drussila. Death will inevitably take me, but not so soon. Not yet." Pressure pushed into her skin from his fingertips as he began a slight massage around the base of her neck. Drusilla. "But how do you know?" She sighed, quietly reveling the feel that the base of his kneading fingertips created. "Why must you be killed to begin with? What are you even dying for? Do you know, Theo—have you anything to die for? The way I have the people I love-- my family, the noisy lot of them." Her full mouth curled brightly into a smirk of rememberance. "'I pray that, if you must die, you die for something far greater than your valor'. Mama would say it to Father everytime he left with his army. I think I shall pray a similar prayer for you." A sound conscience willed her to relax, to allow the heat and his strengthened touch instill her with a sense of tranquility. The manner in which he swept the bronzed curves of her shapely frame spurred a mild shudder, one that had no doubt erupted from the core of her being. Everything he did to her felt strange in the most wonderful way, a woman's initial enlightening of carnal emotion. With him now pressed so very tenderly against her soft bottom, however, Drusilla became once again positive of faltering underneath him. She wanted only to stand there and relish this moment. How long it would last, Drusilla hadn't the slightest inkling. Despondently taking into consideration the current circumstances of their enslavement she came to a quick conclusion that it very well would be the last time. My first as well as my last. O, how uncannily fitting for such a lonely girl. The pleasant pressure massaging from base of her neck encouraged the momentary shutting of her eyes again. For these precious few moments she did absolutely nothing; not a stir of her hands, not a play upon her mouth. Even her breathing grew elongated, leisurely. She whimpered after a little while, leaning her body upon the solidity of his bare chest for support. Her comforted exhale sounded as if to reflect the actions of his skillful hands. "Thank you", came her sincere whisper. "You are quite good at this, I must say. I wonder if there is, by chance, anything you do no do so well in?" Drusilla chuckled as he had once, low and rich. She astounded herself in realizing the differentiations within their laugher. Drusilla had not expected for his chest to be quite so comfortable. Nor had she expected such a factor to contribute to her recurring blatancy. "Why will you not kiss me, Theodoric?" {If this is headed anyplace you're not diggin, just holla at me } Theodoric. His hands continued their slow, steady process of kneading lightly into the firm skin around Drusilla's neck and shoulders. Leaning in closer, he let his breathing be audible enough as to simply tickle the insides of her ears while he continued to roll her shoulders with his hands. Heavy breaths shot from his nostrils as a form of laughing, though he made no audible sound. "I know I will not die until my death is worth something," he answered. "I will not let myself be defeated before a mob of fools for mere spectacle and entertainment. When I die, it will be defending my people, or defending those I care about." Prayers. He wondered what gods she prayed to. Though the Romans had conquered almost all of the world, most people -- save for those that called themselves true Romans -- maintained their own customs and their own religious deities. It was something Theodoric had noticed while listening to the prayers of the men he fought with in the Colosseum. Theodoric kept his hands moving, applying steady pressure to her back after moving his hands away from her shoulders. He would start with his fingers close together and as he pressed their tips into the woman's skin, his fingers spread out, bringing the slight tension across a larger area of her skin. The comments uttered from her mouth brought a simple smile to the gladiator's lips as Drusilla let her body lean back into his. Her beautiful, curved figure pressed into his own, bringing excitement to rush through his veins. "If you want to discover what I do and do not do well in, you will just have to see for yourself." His words were playful and teasing, something he could not remember weaving into his voice since he was a wild, developing youth. It was refreshing to feel such excitement with a woman again. Growing more and more daring, the warrior slid his experienced hands down the flanks of Drusilla's pack, lighting whisking at the backs of her ribs as the movements of his hands intensified in both area and frequency. Sensual whispers drove the motions of his hands -- whispers he had ignored until she pressed the weight of her body into him. A kiss? Her words surprised him... though he was not sure why. With delicacy, Theodoric released her body from his grip and brought his right had to her chin, rotating her jaw toward upward and around toward his face. Leaning forward, the large man took the young woman into his control, wrapping his other hand around the small of her back and lifting slightly upward as he pulled her fully into his body. His lips met hers as their bodies pressed together. The dominance he asserted was definite and powerful, yet, at the same time, his movements were fluid and delicate. Breaking the lock, he pulled away, looking down into her widened eyes. "What did you say?" Drusilla. If she thought his beguiling presence did wonders to cloud her mind with a loss for words before, it was nothing in comparison to this. Her body in the stronghold of his arms, his strength requiring no effort to keep her so, Drusilla could not help losing herself in this dominating magnificence. No words from his foreign tongue need imply he was in control: she would have it no other way. Gods, and if his arms encompassing her simply was not enough, this beguiling brute had taken it upon himself to heed her outspoken request. "What did you say?" She barely had any time to convalesce from their previous connection. Theo had pulled her to him, assisted in the mesh of their tepid bodies, and sealed a momentary fate with his sweet mouth. It astonished her not only because he had, in fact, acquiesced her request that she had once been for certain would drive him away, but that he, too, was rather sweet in taste. Drusilla had never known a man to be anything other than what reflected their labor, whatever it may have been. But then again, she had never bothered to kiss a man other than those that belonged in her family. Could it be that all men were as delightful to the lips as he was, this gladiator? Somehow she doubted it. "I…" She had not the will to look away from him, fearful of… something. Perhaps there was no reason. "I th-think I forgot. Again. Gods, Theo, please do not stop. Please." Damn all the words that would ever be concocted in her mind, so long as he did not get the notion to leave her just yet. Drusilla knew she was not ready to quit. A brave hand dared the brief yet sensational journey of flesh. Lifting an arm to sweep his shoulder her hand sought the back of his neck, easing herself upward in hopes of finding his wonderful mouth again. Against their peculiar, marble-like smoothness Drusilla whispered, "Do not stop." Theodoric. He held her tight, not beginning to loosen the hold he had over her body. Though Drusilla's body was curved and posed a figure that few women twice her age could match, she was still small and petite in comparison to the large warrior that held her close. Spreading his hand across her back, Theodoric was quick to find out that his hand, with all fingers stretched, could nearly reach from one end of her back to the next. He kept his eyes on her as she shied the slightest bit away from his face and attempted to gain some sort of control over her composure and speech. She had little luck. Despite her obvious lack of ability to put together much of an answer, or even much of a thought, the young woman kept a steady gaze to match that of Theodoric's. The more she rambled on about thinking she remembered, and then admitting that the thought had been fleeting, the larger the grin across the gladiator's face became. She expressed her wishes for a continuation of their mingling, something that Theodoric had planned on just as soon as she spoke. But, perhaps -- despite her inherent need to speak -- it was not the time for words, but rather for actions. She leaned into him fully once more, skipping a soft, small hand to his shoulder, around his back, and finally to his neck. Mimicking the soft kneading technique Theodoric had employed on her shoulders, Drusilla pressed her fingertips into the aching muscles of the warrior's neck. He had never had a wife, or any sort of serious engagement to which his time was devoted. In all of his life, Theodoric was a warrior; he would move from place to place, fighting when he was told to. There were sparks of romance that had blessed him with the gift of familiarity to a woman's body, and experience, but he had never remained with any one woman for any amount of time. Silently, he wondered what would happen between himself and Drusilla. A soft, low moan escaped his lips as her hands went to work. He dared not tell her his neck was his only place of weakness... the one place that could place a fire of passion within him that was hard to extinguish. No, instead, he would let her discover that for herself. What had previously been steady, controlled breaths escaping from the warrior's nostrils were now choppy, un-rythmatic breaths seeping through his mouth. His body was sore from the fight; her touch felt incredible. She leaned forward, whispering once more into his ears. With his head just next to her ears, he spoke, "I will not." His mouth nibbled up the small of her neck, reaching the connection between it and her ear until with a light suction, his teeth gently pressed against her ear. His breathing intensified, spewing into the openings of her ear while his hands graced the smooth, tight skin of the dark woman's back. Pulling away from Drusilla's ear, Theodoric pressed his lips again into hers, this time opening leaving their mouths open enough to allow access for a strong stroke of his tongue against hers. Drusilla. Handsome, heavy, heady: few words to describe him. Invigorating, iridescent, incomparable: several other choice words. They were not, however, what she sought to define him by. Of her entire vocabulary there had to be at least one that described him properly. His lips she simply could not have her fill of. With each nip they took, every gentled bite, every last suckle her mind was beckoned further and further from its concave safeguard. It was not nice to let him devour like this: sensible young women were to mind their innocence until it was to be bestowed upon their husbands. Alas, it terrified her to ponder further on who, if anyone, she would someday marry. Slaves were hardly ever allowed such rites. She feared considering Theodoric in her destiny was not something he had the slightest bit of interest in; this manner of seduction, despite how captivating it continued to be, could have been a simple man's duty for all she was aware. Perhaps this was merely for amusement. Tears stung her eyes as his mouth continued to bewilder her. She did not want to be amusement, nor a duty of any sort. Isis have mercy, she wanted to be needed! Was it so wrong to desire a sense of belonging to a man? And yet, Drusilla knew she did not belong to Theo; he, likewise, did not belong to her. If only he did. If only she would. If only they could. Gods, but I need hi—mmmn! Theodoric's hand—his great, strong fingers sturdier than the cedars of Phoenicia—clasped her back in unbending support, holding her close. O, how she despised it in a most delightful way when he encouraged her absentmindedness. Judging the enthralled groans surging from his bow-shaped mouth of marble Drusilla presumed with an unspoken glee his enticement in her hands. Thus, she continued. Is it here he likes it?, she wondered, hardly able to concentrate with his lips seeking the delicate bits of her ear. Or perhaps here—oh!—yes, maybe here. Gods, this beautiful man… His fortress of a neck amazed her, as every other tangible bit of him had a knack of doing. Such rich tones he had when becoming so carnally inclined... The same hand, now inspired by his splendidly deep bass of masculinity, went about its conscious rotations. After some moments she would pause to simply rake her fingernails lightly upon the base of his neck, marveling each time they nudged across the significant ball that connected his spine. Drusilla marveled it even more when Theo moaned into her, hot breath pouring the contagious instillation of their vehemence. O, Venus, his fervent tongue! With sweet mouth of marble pressed upon her, firm with incentive, he let it delved against her own. She gasped—it could not be helped. The surprise of his saccharine tongue was beyond what she could have imagined at that point, all blamelessness aside. "How delicious you are", she murmured against him, leaning in once more so that he might once again seek to devour her. There was much for her to be risking, being with him. Drusilla was all too well aware that this road would take her nowhere certain; her fate was at an even greater loss than she could hope to control. If she and Theo were to continue, there could be no turning back. For her to think of all the possible consequences, the pending outcomes that might ruin her… Then he would kiss her, and all lucidity would dissipate. It would be futile to escape this, she knew. Perhaps if her breasts were not quite so nearly molded against the rigidity of his chest, Theo insisting in ardent silence that their bodies be intertwined, then it would not be so. She might have had a decent bit of coherency if he was not so handsome, not so masculine, not so delightful in taste. But his scent covered her, seeping through her pores with the additive surrounding heat; her very touch instigated his grunts and moans; his shifting breath echoed in her ears; her lips so hungrily seeking his. As her confidence grew, Drusilla's patience began to splinter a the seams. Theodoric. "Has she ever..." Theodoric's mind pondered several things as his arms held the young woman against his body. He couldn't be sure of what experience she had -- if any -- with men and with indulging into her desires. She certainly knew how to place her hands upon his skin, and she knew what she wanted... or at least seemed to. Theodoric hadn't the slightest clue what would come of their embrace. As a gladiator, he taught himself to never be sure of anything. Despite the countless experience he had as a warrior, his fate was never certain. The gods could bless him one day, and curse him the next. He tried his best to avoid planning things, to avoid hoping for things, and rather, to accept things as they came and experience the moment as it happened. Her small, skillful hands continued to press against the tightly-pulled skin and muscles that surrounded his neck, moving around the entire surface of the area. She had discovered his weak point. In a moment the warrior had lost all conscious thought; his brain shut down, bringing a blissful ignorance to wash over his body. Rather than thought, his mind concentrated on the endings of his nerves and the floods of feeling they were picking up. The churning of the fresh water, the noise above as the fights continued, the giggling of whores outside in the main bath -- all was blocked from his focus. The movements of his tongue became more direct, more precise, more forceful as the battle within their mouths continued onward. She broke away to whisper of her delights, in which he grinned, pressing his forehead against hers. With smooth movement, his hands slid down her back until they sat on the peaks of her ample buttocks, thumbs reaching around her sides to press into the small indents next to her hip bones. His strength pulled her body further against his -- though there was little room for movement -- as he again pressed his mouth against hers, plunging his tongue against hers. Their movements increased as the two became completely overwhelmed with all the intoxicating senses their bodies experienced. Moving his hands again, Theodoric extended the fullness of his grip around the woman's firm rear, bending his fingers into the flesh as he lifted her body against his in a more forceful way than he had yet. Drusilla's weight fell against the weary gladiator; the motions of her hands brought a peculiar weakness to his knees, pleading for him to sit and take away the pressure. The warrior stumbled back a bit, grip still full over the young woman, until his legs tapped against the marble edge of the seats on the far wall of the bath. He let his knees buckle as his rump fell against the stone of the seat. His large, sculpted arms slid to the front of Drusilla's thighs as she stood before him, eyes falling down to him with desire. ((perhaps an "x" is warranted in the thread's title?)) Drusilla. [I gotta agree... 8-)] Beforehand, she had been assured in her desires. Now, however, she was clearly taken aback. She giggled in anxious anticipation, quietly marveling their apt intimacy. It was not something she had known, to be so open with a man this way. In any way, matter of fact. Funny how, merely an hour before, she had fond the lustful union of two individuals a petty sort of action. Had her own experiences changed her mind so very quickly? That uncanny tingling sensation encouraged the soft flushing of her bronzed flesh, Theodoric's every last touch instilling the hardening of her dark, pert tips. Blood coursing throughout her veins gained significant speed as he set that fervent kiss upon the heart of her throat. Drusilla hummed a quiet moan, struggling to retain her noisy nature. The idea proved more and more of a challenge with their fervent continuation. It did not come to her attention that they could have very easily been caught. Her mind no longer bothered to wander, yet now lingered in the extraordinary adventure of her tapped eroticism. It no longer occurred to Drusilla to think on any particular thing: she began now to follow through with her subconscious needs. Gods, but she could not be at complete fault. Such uncommon beauty in the form of a demi-god, it seemed, certainly needed to be under the exploration of someone. Drusilla had seen many a kind of people during her childhood days in the ports of Alexandria; people from what seemed like all corners of the Empire. Ah, but none of them compared to this Germanic tribesman before her. None so pallor in color, so fierce in appearance, so... beautiful. Yes, she was for certain he was a beautiful man. Handsomeness suddenly did not do justice to any physical description of his. His steely hands acted as smooth, warm stones as they patiently worked at the remaining nerves in her system. She found her breathing becoming all the more irregular as these languorous moments swerved by. A low growl erupted from the heart of her, Drusilla daring to slide her body a tad closer to his pleasure-seeking presence. What was it between them that served as such a restricting barrier...? "Oh, my." How it could not have been brought to her attention in the very beginning of their conquest for passion, she had not the slightest inkling. All that was for certain now was his upright position in the matter. She could not quite bring herself to chuckle. At least, not for the clever pun. Her sepia irises glanced up to meet his gaze, now appearing to blaze with a ravenous fire she had never before witnessed. Coyly, at first, but the struggling battle between her modesty and emerging woman's carnal instinct directed a more brazen smirk. Drusilla then giggled to herself, glancing down and again at the display of his imposing manhood. For whatever unintended reason that further spread the heady tingling at the core of her body, she could not help but feel intimidated. Drusilla whimpered lightly as she leaned forward, murmuring against his sweet bow lips, "Gods, you are big. Hmm..." In a feeble attempt to reassure herself Drusilla allowed for a brave hand to wander towards the heat of his masculinity. "If I... would you mind terribly?" With striking impatience she slid the expanse of her palm against his firmness. Amazement spurred her curiosity further, only until his seemingly painful cry sounded, his grip on her tightening. Hastily she released. "Oh, forgive me! Theo, did I hurt you... forgive me, I'm sorry." Theodoric. The young slaved slid her body further against the gladiator's, finding a part of him standing at attention, serving to prevent her from coming too close. He felt her flesh brush against his manhood, moving his eyes to look to hers, only to see that they observed the newfound spectacle. As many men may have been, Theodoric was neither embarrassed, nor shy about his body. He had ran around naked for half of his life; he had experienced women, and he assumed Drusilla knew enough about a man's anatomy to understand what she gazed at. The warrior's body was in perfect symmetry, and perfect when it came to proportions. His hands were large, he stood inches over six feet -- well taller than most men of the time -- and he found himself quite well endowed. Her eyes flicked back up to meet his eyes, a small laugh escaping her mouth, a small smile bending his own. His hands continued their massaging motions, pressing strongly into her flesh, imparting the electricity that flowed through his own body into hers. He could hear her breathing increase in tempo, and he noticed the new tightness that surrounded her body; he could feel tips of her breasts pushing into his skin. Her lips came within reach of his own as she leaned forward and began to speak of his size. In a gentle attack, he lunged forward, pressing his mouth against hers in a heated frenzy. The smoothness of her hand sliding down first his chest and then his abdomen only served to bring pace to his movements as he glided his tongue against hers. She broke the meeting of their mortal lips as her hand lingered anxiously just above the hair that led away from his stomach and to his manhood. A small, nearly inaudible chuckle lifted his words, "No." Her hand slid down the expanse of tissue that led to his raised muscle almost before he had spoken his short word. Her palm met the pulses that ran throughout his manhood, her fingers wrapping around in a semi-tight squeeze. She made a soft movement, bringing floods of feeling and erotic pleasures coursing through his body. A soft bellow rose from the pits of his lungs, scaring the young girl. Her hand left his muscle throbbing, as his eyes opened to search her face. Rushed apologies spewed from her mouth as fright widened her eyes and chopped her speech. A small laugh, eventually growing to overbear her apologies erupted from the gladiator's mouth. "Not pain," he halted his laughing. "You were doing well. Such contact brings a different sort of sound from me." He moved forward toward her at the end of his words, running a hand down her front flank, pressing his fingers into her thighs as he pulled her close. Drusilla. His words served as nothing less than the reassurance she proved to lack. He insisted on having her against him, his strengthened fingers impressing prints upon her thighs as he hauled her closer still. Not in the least bit did she mind. On the contrary, Drusilla hardly seemed to notice how agreeable this little installment of discomfort was. It only urged her need for him to feed her body with further satisfactions. It pleased her to know she could bring this man such sensual delight. At almost that very instant it became her unspoken goal to see him pleasured before herself. How that would work out she had not quite figured, and yet it did not occur to her to dwell much on the idea. Slowly yet surely the usual method of thought became more and more complex, now appearing as a greater deal of a task than an involuntary action. With her senses so acute to the irresolute events at hand Drusilla was keenly aware it would be quite some time before she could process a thought properly again. No: everything was breeching spontaneity now. Spontaneity, as a matter of fact, cued for Drusilla to return her newly venturesome hand back to the assertive organ of Theodoric's taut body. Eyes keen upon him; she lightly reveled in the feel of him against her palm, barely touching most of the engorged flesh. As she intermittently willed it her fingers would begin to squeeze—ever so gently—only to hear the cadence of his restraint splintering. A dazed grin played her ripe mouth then, Drusilla returning his fierce kisses with playful nips and testy little bites. It dazzled her most when his silken tongue came delving into her mouth as if in a search of desperation to locate its mate. And when it was found, there was no separating them. Not for long. Even she was exhaling in tune to the spontaneous movements of her own hand. It was truly a magnificent muscle, this stone-imitating rod of his; the slightest bit of reverence given to it seemed to evoke even greater effect, Theodoric's facial expressions being the proven factor. Gods, and it frightened her in a most exciting manner to recognize it was harder than the marble beneath their feet. Harder, warmer… Drusilla feared he was becoming too indulged with the varying behavior of her palm. She released him after a final grasp, her iniquitous giggle mocking his pleasured denial. What she whispered against the smooth, straight edge of his jaw-line was unknown to her at the moment; the feel of him became more and more unbearable as their ardor intensified. Another growl erupted from the heart of her throat just then, the same fingers probing at the intricately simple nape of his toughened neck. Her opposite hand found support in the amusing muscle of his triceps, molding each fiber with the tips of feathered fingers. So much of him to discover, this strange man. So very much to appreciate. Spontaneity flounced itself in greater doses. Great thighs squirmed smoothly upon him, her imploring moan echoing. "Mmmn, please", thoughtless words spilled from her lips as she sought his fervency. "Love me now." Theodoric. Remaining still, Theodoric was cast afloat within the moment; his mind no longer served to warn him, to caution him, to tell him to stop. His desire had shut out his conscious and taken over his actions, bringing very little thought to the front of his head. Large, chiseled arms continued to work away at the flesh of the woman before him as the warm water of the bath continued to shoot steam upward to surround the area. It was an experience, that is sure, one that Theodoric guessed he would not forget in a long time. Bringing a trail of sensation across his lower abdomen, and then to his groin, Drusilla placed her hand around his shaft once more, only serving to spur on the attacks of his tongue. He had lost complete control. His thoughts no longer centered around his head. Instead, the center of his being at that moment was concealed within the bronze fingers of the woman that stood before him. A frenzy of heat and a desire that left the warrior wanting more from her small palms brought an intensity to his kisses that he was pleased to feel Drusilla match. The soft flesh of her hand felt cool against the warmth his lengthened organ gave off; cool yet refreshing. Every touch she placed upon him served to spread across the surface of his body, tingling every nerve near the area of contact. And then it stopped. His eyes shot open, looking down to his member first and then to her eyes to see that she had pulled her hand away with a sly grin. Was she teasing him? She had seen the effect the placement of her hand had upon him, perhaps she wanted to see now how he would act without it there. As if to further press the carnal nature that had taken control of the gladiator's body, Drusilla leaned close, whispering words that his mind caught little of. To a man with conscious, the words would have been clear, to a man enveloped with lustful desires, only the pressure of the air against the canals of his ears was noticed; only that brought him even further into the bliss that surrounded him. Her fingers worked quickly at his arms as her whispers and nibbles continued... only until she slid her thighs across the fronts of his own and sat, straddled across him. He looked to her as she moaned, expressing her desires for him to bring the same amount of pleasure to her body as she had to his. The warrior's large, great hands slid up the insides of Drusilla's legs, one continuing downward toward the folds of her womanhood while the other slid up to roll over her breasts. His southernmost hand found a soft, supple flesh; his fingers traced over a small crevice in the skin. Barely making contact, his fingers dribbled down and then up once more, triggering a response from the flesh. Incredibly aware of the closeness of his own sexuality, Theodoric wondered how far the young girl was willing to go. With a quick, unpredictable movement, his fingers spread the lips of her entrance apart and ventured deeper into the moist, warm, velvety flesh. He pressed them as far as they could go, while his thumb rubbed against the small point of pleasure that brought quick breaths and almost inaudible moans from her mouth. He whispered to her, as her hips began to roll with the movements of his fingers. "How far do you intend to take this?" He asked. He knew she was a virgin; he didn't know how long she wished to remain one. Drusilla. She wanted to shout at the feel of it. It felt so right with him there, plunging his fingers through her teeming blossom. Strange to feel so abruptly wonderful, seeing that nothing had sought to possess her in this sort of manner. Strange, but right. So very, very right. Instinct insisted she follow the course his fingers instigated. Perhaps… ah, yes, as she swerved ever so gently against the sturdy structure of his fingers the pleasure increased. It was merely a glimmer, nothing outrageously deifying, but certainly something new. Drusilla had grasped his shoulders in the surprise of his delicious invasion, stifling a moan. Gods, she was noisy, but she found herself quite liking it. Something empowered her knowing she could experience pleasure as any other woman. Theodoric was thrusting a tad harder now, seeking the depths within. What his thumb simultaneously sought to massage ever so cleverly became over-sensitized. She did shout this time, echoing the sensation of this newfound amazement. As he continually plunged to her core Drusilla grew all the more ardent of her senses. The sudden scent struck her as queer; something indescribable. It had not wafted through this heavy air a moment before. Lithe fingers of golden-brown that had once dallied across the terrain of his nape now flowed upward, losing themselves in the shortened locks of his mahogany hair. He kept thrusting, kept pushing inside. So good… Drusilla's breathing pattern continually varied. On certain seconds she was merely gasping, her breath taking in the lethargic air. Other moments her voice chimed of octave groans and beseeching cries. O, Isis, how he made her feel inside! Everything this glorious man did to her only intensified with enjoyment. If this had anything to do with why so many women were pregnant so often, Drusilla understood completely. What woman in the right mind would want a husband to leave their bed when such sensations as this could be relished so often? She could hardly imagine what it would be like when Theodoric finally had himself within her completely… "How far do you intend to take this?" As if roused from a magnificent dream Drusilla blinked, refusing to cease her movements as she regained temporary comprehension. It did not do much for now; the glimmers of newfound delight still wrought the tiny currents within, ensuring her mouth use for little more than exalting noises of pleasure. With every fiber in her chimera, she spoke dazedly against the curve of his ear, "Oooh, Theo… as far as you can… can… stand to take me. Will you…. mmm, take me, lovely Theo?" A readied kiss was placed upon his soft earlobe, another upon the hardened jutting of his pronounced jaw, and still another on his paled cheek. She saved the most delicious for last, savoring his saccharine lips and tongue of velvet. "Yes, take me, Theo… make me yours." Theodoric. The air became flooded with a mix of exhaled hot breaths, stifled moans -- and at times very un-stifled moans -- and the strange, but invigorating scent of the pair's actions. Drusilla curved her lips around his ear, pressing the vibrations of her moans against his canals where her pleasure quickly served to heighten his own. She had found his spot; where he completely lost all will and control of his body. Her constant attacks on his broad neck and lobes of his ears had left Theodoric feeble and trembling, shaking uncontrollably beneath her whispers and outcries of ecstasy. With rapid breaths, the gladiator's chest expanded and contracted; with rapid rocking, Drusilla's legs ground into his own flesh. Their lust had evolved into a sort of rhythm, something that drove them both on so long as their bodies continued to slide against one another... so long as their pleasure continued. "This woman.." he thought, barely able to put any words together in his mind for the sensations that pounded into his mind. "Where has she been all this time?" She rocked forward, pressing his fingers further into her than he thought they could go; she obviously enjoyed the sensation. His flesh below pounded with his heightened heart beat, pulsing against her soft, untouched (or mildly so) flesh that loomed only inches away. How he longed to completely have this young girl that sat stridden across him! Leaning forward, Drusilla whispered into his ear once more after dipping her tongue into his mouth, wrestling with his tongue. Take me. She had ordered it, and he would oblige her... he had hoped for those words. Lifting his behind from its seat, he maneuvered his fingers until they slid away from the depths of her body, serving only to hold open her wet warmth. The other hand, with help from slight movement of his hips, guided his raging muscle against her flesh. His tip pressed against the moist, inviting tissue sending a new rush of different excitement through his body. With slow, careful movement, he guided Drusilla's body back against his hips, pushing himself further into her. His eyes remained constant on hers, studying her face for any signs of pain or discomfort. With slow, cautious movement, the folds of her inward flesh slid atop his manhood, grasping tightly against it with flutters of pleasure and excitement. Once she had leaned back enough to have all of his flesh within her, he leaned forward, kissing her breasts vigorously before kissing her mouth. Biting her lip as he pulled away, he spoke. "Move slowly at first," he cautioned, remembering his first experience with the action. Drusilla. Her breath caught once he slipped his wondrous fingers out from within her teeming core. Beseeching whispers escaped her bee-stung lips; it was almost a calamity of sorts to see… nay, to feel him abandon her impassioned sex. He pulled her away to a certain degree, his trailing hands of marble leaving behind subtle traces of flushed rosiness upon her susceptible skin. Seeing him so ardent, so desiring… and all for her! To know she had been solely responsible for his lustful factions instilled her with an indescribable satisfaction: the pride of a woman, perhaps? Theodoric seemed prepared to burst inside and out at any moment if he did not find himself in her. It was assured at her hinting kiss that his wishes would be upheld. Drusilla watched in apprehension as Theodoric guided his way to the outer petals of her honeyed blossom. The pulse within her veins hastened as the smooth head of his organ sought her hidden opening… until he began to ease his daunting length inside. Her heart pounded to a terrorized halt: he was inside. Inch by precious inch, his headed member seeking welcome as he approached that certain barrier— A bloodied cry ripped her from the delight of it all. It was a pain this time, a horrid, wretched pain that suggested the rejection of his being. It stung, tears springing into her dark eyes as she buried her mouth within the crook of his neck to retain the outburst of a cry. Somewhere in the depths of her mind she panicked that they did not fit properly, that such a union as theirs was ill-fated. He was so great, and she so very small, so tight… She was hugging him now, arms clutching him by the shoulders so as to attempt to hinder the pain. O, Isis, but she struggled a fierce fight! It was imperative to keep from letting the overflow of tears breech her eyelashes: Theodoric would not see her cry like a child. For she was a woman now. And women, as she had learned in the subconscious tutelage of her mother, were to be accustomed to pain, no matter its form. They were to take it and bear it with little complaint in the eyes of men. This way, we are proven as strong as they if not more so. With this being her commencement into such a title, Drusilla was more than determined to prove her strength. After all, every woman before her had undergone a similar ceremony with initial copulation. Her pain could most certainly be borne with little difficulty. It took a moment or so, but she eventually lifted away from him. Her spine straightened as she sat up, a hand of splayed fingers maneuvering the twists and curls of her thick hair from out of her face with a single brush back. She would not hide behind anything when he made love to her. It was no secret she wanted to witness every marvelous expression that lovely face of his made once their bodies went into motion. Every bit of him was consumed by her tightened flesh. As if rewarding her for the previous inclination of bravery the beautiful man leaned forward to set his lips of marble upon the silk of her impertinent breasts. Ravenous he appeared now, hungry for every inch he could aspire to devour. Drusilla found herself gliding back into that unimaginable state of pleasure, that same glimmer sending a wonderful splash throughout her core. It possessed a far greater depth than several minutes before with merely his fingers: a thick, solid embodiment of joy. She exhaled sharply once she adjusted her hips momentarily, recognizing how completely he filled her. An astounded smile was the last thing she expected to play across her lips, yet it did. Gods, he was delightfully big. What she had thought would never come together properly suddenly became a most idyllic lock-and-key form. The model consummation. Theodoric fit perfectly inside her. His mouth found hers, that previous fervency refusing to cease. Excitement spurred Drusilla's response, the hand that had explored the exotic texture of his dark hair now splayed against the prominence of his cheek, lifting his kiss so that she might drink more of him. How delicious! "Move slowly at first." Theodoric had nipped at the bottom of her ripe lip, his words holding intent of assured advice. With little to say but another impassioned whimper she nodded, daring for her shapely hips to make motion against his heat. A stronger glimmer sparkled this time, almost a flare. The surprise of it brought about her charming gasp, braving continuation of her body. It was awkward at first, Drusilla still calculating intuitively just how in the name of Juno she would manage this in a more effective manner. She did not have to wonder much longer, for a simple motion of his large hands steadied her. With his imploring assistance she regained a suited pace, the new afternoon lovers then discovering their own sensual cadence. In the far back of her mind Drusilla knew it would never be forgotten. "Oooh...!" She clapped hands to her gaping mouth in realization of her loquacious exalt, the waves of pleasure returning quickly. O, how was it that lovely man continually encourage such noisiness from her? Theodoric. Moments had passed and all the while Theodoric was still lost in a void of pleasure. His senses had complete control over his body, though he smelled little, and a certain weight fell to his dazed eyes. Every inch of his physique longed to be graced by the quick fingertips of the woman sitting atop him. The heat of the water that still consumed parts of their bodies had placed beads of moisture across their skin to mix with the stale salt of sweat that was being created from their movements. The cry of a lost innocense that the warrior had been expecting whimpered forth from the woman as she placed her face into his shoulder. He could feel the pain-controlled contortions of her tight flesh around his heat, only wishing there was something more he could do to settle her. Against his urges to pump his hips as quickly as they would go, Theodoric kept control over his lust and continued to push upward, into her lower flesh. With steady, experienced hands, the gladiator took hold of Drusilla's bent hips and moved her body into a rhythm that would be easy for her to continue. Despite her novice position, Theodoric found that the curved, supple body of the girl served well to bring him satisfaction. Slight moans escaped his mouth, deep in tone and hot in temperature. The steady rising and falling movements of his chest were outlined by the glimmer of water that still ran from his wet hair. Either accepting the pain, or relishing in its passing, Drusilla leaned back, pressing her arms against his chest to regain her upright posture. With a flick of her neck, the black locks of hair that served to hide her grimaced face were thrown against her back. She smiled at him, showing no signs of pain or remorse. At ease, Theodoric smiled back and began to hasten the pace they had created. His hands moved all over her body, bringing as much sensation to her bronzed skin as he could. Circling his thumbs around her nipples, he leaned forward once more to kiss the top of her chest. A moan escaped from Drusilla's mouth, louder and more direct than any she had uttered previously. The pain was receding and allowing pleasure to course through her body. With his hands spread firmly across her midsection, Theodoric pulled against the slave's back, bending her forward until her head once again rested against his shoulder. Quick, relentless kisses and nips tugged at the tightened flesh of her neck as Theodoric began a wider range of movement with his hips. Steady, strong flows of motion would remove his muscles from her grip, and in teasing he would pause until her body shuddered at the absence of his heat. With a quick, gliding thrust he would almost be sucked back to her depths, bringing moans to surface from both of their mouths. Drusilla. [Sorry it took forever and a day, babydoll: had family over this weekend o.O!] Drusilla had never wanted so much of one thing. O, yes, this was certainly avarice at its finest, and with every new realization of it she found herself becoming all the more enticed. When he offered, she took without hesitation. Theodoric motioned for her to fall back in the delightfully musky corner of his shoulder after some moments, his fervency encouraging their hastened pace. His hands were enigmatic; bringing about sensations she never imagined possessing such potency. He could have wrought her into an untamable frenzy if he so chose. And there was not a thing she could do to keep him from it. Then again, what a wonder it would have been to experience him taking her over the edge! Those ripples from moments ago had now transformed into waves, each and every thrust encouraging them to develop into an even greater intensity. Quite easily she became aware that this was a quest of the body, a dual search to seek out the pinnacle of pleasure. It existed somewhere, Drusilla's innate being claimed repetitively. Perhaps if their actions continued in perfect unison, flowing in indescribable synchronicity, it could be reached. "Yes… oh, Theo, yes…" Her fingernails dug into his now salty flesh, marking imprints of pale crescents amongst the droplets of perspiration. Another cry sounded, echoing with greater decibels from the corner of his shoulder. He was so wonderful inside! A shift of his staff of life, that marvelous phallus, stirred Drusilla's body into mounting waves of passion. She began to pant, wildly tentative at the escalation of her newfound enjoyment, the need to feel him sliding so thickly in and out of her blossom suddenly unavoidable. In a desperate panic she tightened the already strengthened wrap of her great thighs about his middle, urging further quickness. By the next morning there would no doubt be bruises, but she did not think to care; so long as it was he who gave them to her. In the far back of a clouded mass that was once her mind, Drusilla briefly recalled her beautiful lover bidding her to keep their slipping pace leisurely. It had been a sensible scruffle of information to being with, considering the previous circumstances. But Drusilla did not want to be sensible. That previous circumstance no longer burdened her from relishing these otherworldly factions of wonder. And now, she wanted his swiftness. Her panting became louder with each thrust he blessed, the winding of her curves. The natural alto of her voice spiraled higher at such zealous whimpers, her dark eyes ablaze with that internal fire. Everything revolved around the senses now, wholly; the ardent grip of his battle-ridden hands, the delightful flavor of his saccharine kisses, the honeyed exuberance of his hot, hard manhood. Hearing Theodoric's uneven breathing waived agreement in their mutual infatuation. The Egyptian could not contain the intensity of these escalating waves, lifting herself properly from his shoulder at the unbelievable feel of it whilst humming the cadence of their lovemaking. Lips against the kinkless graze of his dark hair, she whispered to him. He was bringing her close, so close to that coveted edge… Theodoric. ((it's all good, apologies on the time it's taken me as well.)) He could feel the soft tips of her nails pressing against his stretched back. Her moans of pleasure and words of encouragement served to bring a quickness to the movements of his hips as he began to thrust his bulging manhood deeper and harder into her blossom. A soft tenderness began to tickle the inner parts of his legs, crawling up from his scrotum until it entwined around his muscle. Control had been lost long before and now he lived in the moment. He longed for their actions to continue, that they could build and build in excitement and pleasure, but be robbed of the satisfactory conclusion until they had both had their fill. Shudders quaked throughout Drusilla's body, bringing her body to writhe in his arms. Theodoric kept moving against her, maintaining their rhythm until he was sure her yells of delight could be heard ringing throughout the Colosseum. Then, in abruptness, he stopped, pulling himself away from her as his face plunged forward to gorge upon her ample breasts, and exposed neck. As he kissed, he could feel the movements of her body, the pleading of her womanhood for more. He rolled around, using his strong arms to bring Drusilla to her back on the slight ledge of the pool. Wrapping her strong, thick legs around his hips, Theodoric pulled the young woman closer to him, pressing the tip of his manhood against her tantalized flesh. His warrior arms crossed around her back, holding her up as he slipped himself into her once more. Theodoric doubted how long he would be able to maintain the new position he had placed himself in, but hopefully it would serve to bring a new world of feeling to the woman. He knew that before long, his arms would give out... but he suspected -- from the sparkles of sensation in his own muscles, and the spasms of hers -- that he would not have to maintain that posture for long. With her body swarmed into his, the gladiator leaned forward, moaning deeply at the soft, warm feel of the woman's body. Each exhaled breath twisted into her ears, bringing an active response from her hips until she began to move quickly against him, bringing his body further and further into the depths of her own. Drusilla. Her last moments of sanity belonged solely to him. Time began to tick against her the moment he moved himself from her warmth. She cried out, her body screaming for him: Drusilla could not help it. At his temporary abandonment she bit back moans, her breath catching every kiss he blessed her flushed skin. Still Theodoric’s touch frazzled her. Still his sounds encouraged her. And still he had left her frantic, impassioned sex aching for his heat. But he moved her swiftly, Theodoric fixing Drusilla so that her backside was flat against the ledge. In no way did she second-guess his claim for absolute dominance; on the contrary, she reveled in his sudden demand for attention. Such viciousness, the violent fortitude that was his Germania raging in flashes through his eyes as he gazed into hers. A beguiled sparkle lit her own once his great hands grabbed her imposing thighs, hoisting the entrance of her against his pelvis. She gasped, fists clenched. How amazing he was! And he hauled himself through her, insinuating ferocity at her sweet cry. It was strangely exhilarating from here… Another wave coursed from the center of her, far more intense and concentrated this time. Hands clasped at his triceps, she started to pant once more. Short, sharp, needy breaths. Needy, aye, she was needy: needy of his love. She desperately wanted not to be so loud, to fight this urge to scream at every little thing this beautiful gladiator did to her. Would he never stop marveling her? Her humming matched their stride, though at one point it ceased to exist. For those recurring yet brief moments in time Drusilla recognized how truly full of him she was. This man, this beautiful, beautiful man, seated within her completely. He touched her to the hilt. Perhaps it was knowing he was so close to her soul that brought about the change. Maybe, even, it was this unrelenting sensation of never being anything less than adored by him. Nonetheless, it encouraged a spur of change from the core of her very being. These waves, escalating so sharply, and the two of them, bound in such ardency of the limbs… it was bound to lead to some sort of an explosion. Something great, incredible. Upon it’s brink she quite nearly bellowed, breath held in unbearable anticipation… Then it came. The crash of that enormous wave, surging this absolute bliss of ecstasy from the heart of her being and lacing throughout, that claimed every imaginable sense. She had not merely broached the edge but leapt from it, slipping the tips of her mind within what could have very well been unadulterated paradise. Every muscle tightened against him. That smooth back of hers arched at incredible angles, daring comparison with the curve of the twilight moon. And her eyes, now entirely bedazzled beyond words, were shut tightly, dark brows mimicking the varying sensations blasting within. Those laces of streaming fires disintegrated every last cell of sense, her head thrown back to expose the exquisite lining of a throat, mouth parted for the screams of his immaculate name. And they came: she yielded herself to everything of this outburst from the depths of her very soul. The leap only rose higher and higher, demolishing her entirely. He exploded inside her. With every outburst she gave into the swirls of marvelous colors sparkling throughout the glory that was once her mind. This momentous glory that would leave her forever altered. Theodoric. ((sorry this took so incredibly long!)) In a frenzy that seemed to move to the beat of their hastened hearts, the gladiator and the woman continued in their endeavors. Sweat glistened against the curves and dimples of their flesh, hot gusts of breath swooned from their throats. All the smells and sounds of their passion capsized them in a wave of bliss. Theodoric's eyes were shut; his vision was nothing more than white specks of light, nothing to make out. Drusilla continued to slide up and down his being, moaning all the louder, and squirming more as the intensity of her senses increased. Theodoric could feel the excitement rushing through his body; he could feel the tingling sensation build around the larger bulge at the end of his pole. It would not be long until he had emptied himself within this young woman. A side thought wondered how fertile she was; if this action would bring a child between them. He had not told the girl of his plans to leave the lands, to leave Rome. Plans had been laid out and were to be executed soon that would free him from his meaningless life and return him to serve his true people. A sudden expulsion of hot, lustful air burst into the gladiator's ear, turning his thoughts away. Drusilla's movements increased in range as she brought herself up and down at a greater angle and intensity. Her speed slowed, but the passion that guided her movements increased. Theodoric could feel the muscles within her begin to tighten. The chasm that held his manhood in place soon fell tighter against his own flesh, bringing a new level of pleasure. The muscles of his rear tightened, his lips lifting up as his breathing came to a standstill. Drusilla's body arced, and then crumpled up as she spewed moans of delight to mimic those that Theodoric bellowed. A sudden shoot of hot fluid left the warrior's muscle, tightening his lower stomach to such a degree that his body rose up to meet against that of Drusilla's. Drusilla continued her movements in an attempt to hold on to the delightful feeling just a little longer. Her body, though, would not have it, and each time she attempted to slide up and back down, she would have to stop. With exhaustion taking the place of the excitement and passion that had just been ejected, Theodoric leaned back, letting the weight of the young woman fall against his chest. She breathed heavily against his steadily rising torso, and the two remained in silent for quite a time, still interlocked. Drusilla. "Oh, Theo…" She would have drifted further into that glowing serenity that was the conclusion of their midday love. No such place would she rather be than splayed upon his great chest, his heaving breath coinciding with hers. How she had ended up above him again she could not know; their frenzied movements were difficult to recalculate just now. But the reality of the world began to dissipate her fantasy. Soon the chaotic melancholy of their atmosphere heightened its chorus, sending Drusilla's momentary peace away nearly as abruptly as it gradually arrived. So much effort for the terribly few (yet undoubtedly marvelous) glimmering moments of ecstasy. Strange that she adored every last second they spent dallying out of actuality's clutches. It took every bit of willpower for her to left herself up, curvaceous frame languid as the serenely coursed Nile. Her arms loosely encircled at his neck, that adventurous hand now easing with mere simplicity into the damp tress of his short hair. A lazy smirk played her sweet, soft lips as she kissed him awake. With her tongue she could easily recount where his teeth had played about with nips and endearing bites. "If you fall to sleep now, I'll only want to follow you. Won't you stay up a few moments, for my sake?" Another kiss upon his cheek, that sleek Acwellen nose, the center of sweat speckled flesh between his dark brows. From just outside their temporary dwelling she overheard splashes and flirtatious laughter, sounds of additive reminders to the callous realm that was Rome. Sounds of a place and time she had little care towards, where she had never wanted a thing to do with. Why could life not be so simple as it was here and now, in his impregnable fortress of arms? Drusilla shifted upon him so as to release, gasping as she went. She took his offered hand to steady herself, a queer dizziness making way to her petite feet. For a moment she stood there in that water, simply breathing and keeping hold of his great hand. What had suddenly blossomed within the depths of her being she could never know, nor could she hope to comprehend, save for the innate recognition of pure satisfaction. Aye, she was satisfied. A coy grin cross her then, Drusilla releasing his hand to smooth the untidy waves of hair back. "I-I think… I should g-go, perhaps. I-I-I don't want to make Archaita suspicious of me." Damn and blast, not again! In truth she could not have cared less about the thoughts of her mistress. Archaita had never mattered in the beginning, before Theodoric, and she certainly did not imply so much as a streak of concern now, after him. But what else were she to have said? 'I'll leave you now, lover of mine, because if I stay too long then I'll not have the strength to abandon your touch. Yes, I'll go before I find myself clung to your heels'. And she could certainly not lessen her Sebervius pride by proving to be nothing but a mewling ninny at his feet. And yet, those moments ago, when she had embraced him and he had possessed her… it had been the most marvelous of things. She had not minded that him making love to her was a lessening of pride. On the contrary, it glorified the young woman's innate buoyancy. She was a woman now, because of him. That was what he had proven. Beginning to braid the wet, wavy length of her dark hair Drusilla wondered gently, "I… um, when are the games finished, do you think?" Why will you not come here and tell me something sweet before we part? "I hope it hasn't been too long." I'll never see you again after now, Theo. Slightly wavering hands continuing to working at the thick braid she offered him another smile, hoping it reflected the blithe lie she meant to impose as true, before walking through the water. Her glistening, tepid skin went into despair as she stepped out of the pool, eyes averting his as she returned to the pile of cloth that was once her chiton. Upon spreading it out she recalled the great slosh of a stain. "Damn", she hissed. Slightly irritated with her inability to leave this beautiful man Drusilla stood again, hands thrust to her hips with impertinence. Ironic how she now wanted nothing more than for him to see her in her naked glory now, something perhaps to be remembered by if nothing else, whereas before she would have willingly put up a fight had he so much as glanced her way. Secretly, she hoped he did not mind glancing her way either. "You would not happen to know where I can find another chiton, would you?", she wondered, the kindness of her tone betraying the attitude of her pose. "I can't very well walk out of here bare as I was born." Theodoric. Theodoric breathed in silence while Drusilla removed herself from him and began to back away. He wasn't careless; he felt, he longed, and there was no way he would go the rest of his days without seeing this woman. Young as she was, the gladiator didn't care. They had shared something that was important to him; and he was sure it was important to her. She walked away, speaking sadly... waiting for his interjection to stop her retreat. Finally, after peering over her dirtied clothes, she turned back to him, using whatever she could to continue their interactions before she finally had to leave. His eyes remained on her; locked within the darkness they provided. She was beautiful; he had recognized her allure when first coming across her in the halls of the under-works, but only now did he see her true beauty. Rising from the position he had been in for the past several minutes, the large warrior stood fully extended. His muscles were, to his surprise, incredibly weak, and upon his standing all he desired was to sleep. He smiled, a genuine reflection of the warmth and content he felt within his being. Large strides parted the water before him and he stood before her, looking up at her figure that now towered above him out of the large pool. "Do you have to return?" He didn't answer her question; he did not know where she could find another cloth like the one she wore, but he knew she could manage to slip into one of his chitons. "I do not wish for our time together to be such a short occasion." Stepping from the pool, the balance of their height returned to its original standing. He peered down over her frail figure, her somewhat afraid eyes. "I--" It was hard for him to express what he truly wanted to say. In his culture, the men never needed to say what they felt, it was unnecessary. He had been brought up believing that women were partners only used to secure the survival of his people and their way of life by continuing the generations. Theodoric had had a wife once, and though he felt love for her, he never acknowledged it... and then she was taken from him. And that is where his fear stemmed. Admitting his feelings to this dark, beautiful woman before him would mean the warrior would be putting himself at risk. This, however, was not a danger that could be shielded against with any sort of armor or shield. "I want you to stay with me," he muttered, "tonight." Drusilla. [[Dunno why, just felt like smiling!]] Funny how his very gaze did wonders to her already exhausted body. And yet, when he offered that lazy grin for her eyes to behold, it was very much like falling into weightlessness. She had not realized before how strongly his expressions of the most simple joy excited her. "Do you have to return?", he asked of her. Drusilla took hint of the somewhat despondent tone, a touched little smirk coming to her lips. "I do not wish for our time together to be so short." "Nor do I", she admitted, perhaps too quickly. As she spoke her lithe fingers took hold of one of his great hands again, even fingernails tracing the deep lines upon his battle-ridden palms as she had nearly an hour before. "But I… I think I must go back. Don't you think I have to go back? It's only right. Otherwise," she set a light kiss at the base of his strong throat, "You will never get any rest. Sleep is so important to a gladiator, isn't it, Theo? You need your sleep, beautiful man." Drusilla knew it was wrong of her push him away like this, deny him of what he subtly asked. Perhaps it was because she had not truly believed he would exude such genuine longing. Was this sort of behavior not intended to cease after he had his fill of her? His body had received what it so avidly wanted, and she could not dare to deny she had not received a similar, if not greater, satisfaction. She would be a liar if she were to think she did not want him to crave her company still. But it could only hurt her more in the end, would it not? "Forgive me for exhausting you. Perhaps I should not have let you…" The initially bold words trailed off as her cheeks darkened, vivid memories of their union spurring her to sudden coyness. Giggling as if she were a joyous child she finished with greater talk, "… emanate every bit of energy into our movements. You've worn me out, and I surely was not the one battling ferociously for my very life some hours ago! I can only imagine how exhausted you are." As if to further recount the past she closed her fingers about his hand in a gentle resolution, gazing up into his beguiling irises for what could very well have been the last time. Isis have mercy, she did not want to leave this man! He possessed a part of her, some strange, internal part Drusilla never knew had existed that she was aware could not be returned to her. And she, likewise, had marked him with her virgin's blood, claiming his memory as hers for as long as the gods bid her to continue living. And yet it seemed quite impossible to her that he could need her as much, if at all, as she believed she needed him. Quite impossible indeed. She had sighed with a profound grief, one too heavy for one such as her youth to have known. If there was one thing she would not do, it would be to cry in front of him. There would be no tears in his name while he stood before her. "I—" "I—" At their concurrent beginnings she smiled with a point of attempted humor, nodding for him to continue. She almost did not believe she heard him when he murmured, his sweet breath caressing the bridge of her nose just as his delightfully masculine scent became stronger with his closeness. "I want you to stay with me tonight." She should have thought about it. Truly, were she in her proper state of mind, she would have sat a moment to take in all of what she heard. It was not as if he gave a speech, Osiris help her, but it certainly felt like it. After all, it was not everyday the girl was implored to keep pleasurable company of another man. But Theodoric was no ordinary man. This of all things she knew to be true. Looking up from her pearly toes Drusilla shook her head, brows knit with confusion. There was, in all actuality, nothing confusing about it. "Oh, but Theo… I… I-I snore at night.” She was appalled with the sincerity of her own tone. After a thoughtful moment she sighed, hands on her hips where they had first been. She was smirking fully now, mocking her own silliness. Trust her to be the one who would hesitate in unanticipated moments of happiness. When the gods send a blessing, never ask as to why. Who was she to push away that which she desired so terribly? The gods were blessing her now: this was her moment to thank them by acquiescing. And in the morning, when things would be hazy with the hazy unknown future and yet enchanted with the indescribable past, Drusilla was aware she would handle their imminent separation in stride as she did all things. Soulful eyes flickering back his way under darkened lashes, she smiled as free fingers traced the muscle of his abdomen. “Well, I suppose I should let you be the judge of how irksome my snoring becomes. You might tell me in the morning, if I ever awaken. And Theo?” A wandering hand fell to the smooth, flattened plane of her belly, curious gaze following. Part of the new woman in her vied to inquire about the possibilities of their union, whether or not they had just created something. Half envisioning his potent seed igniting life within her womb she gave a thoughtful, “Hmm…”, though spoke nothing. Nothing in regard to her original thoughts, that was. The other part of the new woman within said something quite different. “Later, after we have rested, might you do that… thing to me again? Where you made me scream before you were even inside me?” Rather blithely she admitted with a brazen smirk to him, “I quite liked it.” Theodoric. As ever, he stood tall and silent, his eyes watching her every slightly move; his ears catching the waves of tension and apprehension that carried her voice. He smiled at her words as she spoke of how tired he had to have been. Theodoric had been through nights much harder than the one he had rather enjoyed. The fight hours earlier was somewhat difficult, but the heat of the water within the bath had served its purpose well, leaving the warrior feeling limber as ever. Contrary to Drusilla's assumption, their passion had not served to tire him any more, rather, it was invigorating. An life-force that he couldn't quite remember feeling before coursed through him and added pace to his steps. "I am quite alright," he assured her. "I am a warrior. Before I knew to spell my name I had been taught to ignore pain and exhaustion; neither holds any sway over me now." Despite her initial refusal to stay longer with him, Theodoric knew the woman wished to be with him. No matter what words came from her sweet lips, he could read her eyes... they had served to answer his questions well enough for the short part of a day that he had known her. She came closer to him, wrapping a small bronze hand around the brutish tools of a warrior. Her fingers traced the scars of battle, marks, that to Theodoric, served to remind him of his life. He would remember almost all of his life by the scars that served as reminders to his past. He was unsure whether their lives would force the two of them to separate from one another, or if in some way two slaves could manage to keep some sort of freedom between themselves. Theodoric could remember what it was like to be free... it had only been four years since he tasted it... smelled it. The whole time he had been in Rome, he hadn't the ability to make a choice that reflected upon his life... until he met Drusilla. Snoring? After all she had shown this stranger, after giving herself completely to him, she worried over her snoring? A loud, robust laughter filled the chamber. Theodoric couldn't remember laughing so hard in a long time. "My dear, the majority of my nights are spent sleeping next to men twice my size at the waist and nearly twice my age. I could not explain to you the noises I have grown used to while sleeping here in the Colosseum." He realized such sleeping arrangements probably would not sound very comforting to the woman, and so he was quick to add on to what he said. "Luckily, my master has given me my own apartment in the poor quarter of the city for bringing him wealth through my victories. It is a small place, but it's better than sleeping with the other pigs that fight for him." He was glad she finally accepted to stay with him. Indeed, he would be the judge over whether her snoring was a nuisance or not. But, after so many nights sleeping alone and cold, Theodoric was positive the presence of a woman's warm body -- despite the noise of snoring -- would be something he would find very hard to give up. Again a smile broke across his face at the young woman's words. This time he suppressed a laugh, but was amused by what she had said. "We shall see," he responded. "It depends on how much rest we get." He grinned slyly, walking away to a back room where extra clothing was kept. He brought out a large chiton, one for a large warrior, and tossed it to her. Drusilla. His very grin ignited that inherent sensuality within her blossoming soul. Biting the corner of a plump lip Drusilla eyed the gladiator as he sauntered over to the other room, her dark irises taking in every movement from every fiber of muscle emerging from his back. Perhaps we may not get around to sleeping as much as I anticipated, came her tempestuous conscience as she caught sight of a dimple upon his left hind cheek. A giggle claimed her, Drusilla shaking her head. Sleeping indeed! She caught the oversized chiton singlehandedly, quietly observing its humongous expanse of dark green. Despite its great size, the color was quite appealing. "All you men must insist on being gigantic," she mused quietly, throwing the fabric over her head with ease. As the opening of the tunic fell off the smooth brown of a shoulder she grumbled, deciding it would be best to wear it in a belted fashion. Stealing the linen sash from her dirtied chiton her lithe hands nimbly went about tying it just under her breasts, taking care to fasten what she could of the sleeves appropriately. With half of the sleeve refusing to cooperate, however, she sighed with slight irritancy. "I wonder, did this belong to a man who had shoulders upon his shoulders? Everyone is so great!" Or perhaps I am just small? Turning to her grinning afternoon lover she offered her own smirk, brandishing a wink. "So, does this apartment of yours have a culina by any chance? I would cook something for us… gods, I'm hungry, aren't you? I think I could eat a heifer right about now." Holding out her hand to him she continued to speak, comforted in knowing he seemed to enjoy hearing her voice. She would certainly not deny that she enjoyed his keen attention. "Come, take me to the velabrum so I might buy us some bread and fruit. I've some money on me from yesterday still, I think. Do you like fruit, Theo? Gods, I love fruit!— particularly dates. I'll make us something sweet to go with our bread so we might have something to eat. And then we can devour one anther will equal hunger. Would you like that, beautiful Theo?" At the moment she could not figure as to why she continually addressed him as "beautiful", but it did not bother he to wonder with irritance: Drusilla grinnined knowing she only spoke the truth. Theodoric. A short laugh bellowed from the lower portions of Theodoric's torso. "You are simply small, my dear." Despite his normal quiet and cautious behavior, the experience he had shared with the dark woman that stood before him brought Theodoric to bring his guard down. All of his years in Rome, he had wished to leave the city; he kept himself ready and prepared to escape. He made himself survive simply for the sake of survival, and eventually for a hope of revenge. It was strange to him now that revenge was the last of his worries. Without explanation, his central focus was on freeing himself, and freeing Drusilla. They could only be as much as their masters would permit while still shackled.... but free, gods what they could be! He smiled at the thought, catching a gaze from the woman that held his affection. The chiton slipped away from her slender build, bringing a wide smile to his face. The gladiator turned his sight to the clothing he had worn after the fight; it was stained red and brown from the sands of the fighting floor. Turning around, he grabbed an extra garment for himself and returned before Drusilla. Food? He hadn't thought of eating since earlier in the day. Just the description of a meal brought a sudden weakness to the man's knees. He almost always ate after a fight... except this time he hadn't gotten a chance. He smiled at her, proud she offered so much to him. He only wished he could do more for her. He promised himself he would. "It does," he answered in response to her question of a curia. He approached her, putting a soft hand across her hip. "I would love that," he answered. He leaned in, teasing a kiss, and then pulled back, grinning once more. Inwardly, he could hardly recognize the warrior he had been. The ragged, hairy, scarred beast covered in furs and wielding a long, soft bronze sword charging without thought had disappeared. His blood still ran strong, and his blood claimed his heritage... but even his appearance had changed. His scars were still visible; his build gave away his heritage, but the styling of his hear, and the way in which he spoke and carried himself cried "Roman!" It was almost disgusting to a part of him... but a part of him had learned to accept the inevitable long ago. __END OF THREAD__
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