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Found 11 results

  1. August 76 It was rare that Rufus was sent on an errand by his master; he was his master's personal attendant and errnads were generally given to house-slaves to run. This one had been deemed important enough to dispatch Rufus himself, though, and he was glad of the little bit of freedom to leave the house and take the message, which was for the lanista of the Ludus Magnus. The only reply he'd been told to wait for was a 'yes' or a 'no' (and Rufus' master being who he was, the expected and only acceptable answer would be 'yes') which answer he'd received. He was on his way home and hadn't managed to get very far when he had to move out of the way of a litter that was being carried along the street with little regard for the pedestrians already in it. He hastily stepped backwards and, as he did so, caught his foot on the edge of a pothole caused by a missing paving stone and went down, hard. It was a moment before he could gather himself, and look down at his ankle, which was throbbing. He hadn't heard or felt anything break, but there was a definite swelling at the joint, and he sucked in a breath. mehercle but it hurt! @Chevi
  2. It wasn't that long after Rufus had been accosted by Aglaea's master that he saw her again. He was waiting in line at a hot food stall while waiting for his master - the Senate was debating something dreadfully dull and boring that required the presence of the Emperor's brother but not of the Emperor's brother's redheaded body slave. He stepped out of the queue - really, he'd do better saving his money than spending it on whatever the food stall sold, that they claimed was actual food but was probably dead rat. "Aglaea!" @Echo
  3. May, 75 AD After discovering that his money had been stolen under Aglaea's inattentive eye, Secundus had been looking for a way to find the culprit. Secundus happily seized on her mention of a male slave, Rufus, that she had spoken with shortly before she noticed the purse missing. Now, Secundus had elected to investigate the matter personally. Although they were due back in Tibur soon, he could not let this matter rest. No one could steal from the Varus family without some action being taken. It did not take long to arrange the meeting. Rufus served a master who moved in much the same circles as Secundus, and finding him lingering while his master attended to some business was easy enough. Spotting him across the way, Secundus strode purposefully towards the man. The physical description did not quite due the hair justice, he thought with some amusement. "Are you Rufus? You spoke to one of my slaves, by the name of Aglaea. I have urgent business which requires your assistance." @Sharpie
  4. Early July, 75AD Didia was saving the best until last today, despite her brothers grumbles as he pushed the cart up the hill towards their final stop. By virtue of being seen upwards of thrice of a week by some of the slaves, Didia had made enough friends in the households of the great and the good but certain friendships endured more than others. Certain homes were nicer than others as well, and the house of Octavius Flavius Alexander was by far the nicest she had been in. Although, to be fair to the others, all she'd seen of any of them was the kitchen. Finally at the slaves entrance, the cook bustled them in as usual and her brother set about the unenviable task of unloading great quantities of this and that, pre-ordered from her fathers business. Bunches of grapes were apparently in order in Octavius' house as poor Appius unloaded bunch after bunch, stomping through the kitchen and back to the cart. Didia helped where she could, with the lighter items, until the bulk of her work was done and she drew the cook over to make her mark on the scrap of papyrus (and it was a scrap, it cost an arm and a leg!) to prove the order had been completed without complaint. Poor Appius went on his way, back and forward whilst Didia gratefully accepted a cup of wine. She enjoyed the company of the slaves here, they were more refined (ergo - Romanised) than some of the others on her rounds, and the cook always made sure she sat and had at least a cup of watered wine before she left. Appius was content just for a break from the walking and mostly spent his time sat on the cart in the shade outside, trying to snatch a few minutes sleep free of screaming nephews or arguing parents, whilst his sister chatted. As she talked to the cook, a familiar face ducked through the curtain and a wide grin stretched across her face. "Rufus!" her grin settled into a gentle smile, "I thought you'd miss me today, you're busy?" The cook shuffled off to tend to this or that - barking orders at the younger slave girls to stash the food away, and leaving Didia and her friend to catch up. TAG: @Sharpie
  5. Since becoming a mother, Valeria was no longer a deep sleeper. There was always pattering of feet, small bodies climbing into bed next to her due to a nightmare or monsters in the shadows. Their nannies unable to convince the two children no such things existed. Only mother's comfort could sooth those fears. She wasn't quite sure what her sleep addled mind thought it was when she felt the bed shaking, but after patting the bed to see which child had came to join her she knew something was off. Sitting up, she gently woke her body slave up, about to speak when the biggest of the tremors hit. A scream of surprise leaving both of them as she locked eyes with the other woman's. "The children!" They said at the same time, and she threw off her covers and ran out of the room just behind the other woman who was heading to wake up Minor. "Octavius! Earthquake!" She called out down the hallway, hoping her husband or his own slave, Rufus would hear her as she made her way to her daughter's room. The girl was just coming out with her nanny and she scooped her up, "Everyone needs to get outside, now!" She said to the gathering number of slaves around her as they all made their way to the stairs to exit the building. "Don't worry about any belongings, everything can be replaced!" She cried out at a few who was trying to save vases and busts from falling over. @Gothic @Sharpie
  6. (Jan 75 AD) Attis was not entirely sure how he had got the afternoon to himself, and nor did he care - what mattered was that he had got the afternoon to himself. What mattered more was that he'd also been given two sestertii to spend and told to go and have fun. He had wandered around for a bit and found himself in a popina off the Via Lata, which served posca (totally crap but marginally better than lora) and food (greasy but not bad, on the whole). The only free seats were at a large table to one side and he'd debated eating his food at the counter before deciding that he spent far too much of his life on his feet. If someone else wanted to sit down too, well, the table was big enough. There was someone there already, a redhead of a similar age to Attis himself. "Mind if I join you?" "Help yourself, it's a big enough table, and there's nowhere else that's free." Attis didn't need telling twice and sat down. "Rome the eternal city - keeping everyone eternally on their feet," he said with a grin. "It's nice to sit down for once." @Liv @Joaquin @Chevi
  7. Early June 74; Emporium Magnum... Being a slave, Rufus reflected, wasn't necessarily the worst fate in the world. He corrected himself: Being the slave of a rich Roman who had other slaves wasn't the worst fate in the world. Being the trusted slave of a rich Senator was definitely not the worst thing to be (He could think of many many better things to be, of course, but he could think of worse fates.) Being the trusted slave of a rich senator had led Rufus to where he was now: in the Emporium Magnum, running an errand for his new master, hoping he'd remember the way home once he was done, and wouldn't get ripped off so badly he'd not get let out again. There seemed to be some sort of argument going on nearby. He usually steered clear of things like that, but this one didn't sound like the usual row and he found himself drifting closer, curious. Rome was full of people, far more of them than he'd ever seen in one place before - he had no idea how much bigger than Paestum the city was, but it was some order of magnitude larger! Whatever was going on was more than an argument; there was a burly guy picking a fight or something with someone about half his size - a kid smaller than Rufus, even. The kid didn't look like he'd done anything worse than simply be in the wrong place at the wrong time - there was nobody yelling that he was a thief or purse snatcher. If anything, the sentiment of the watching crowd seemed to be on the kid's size, though nobody was stepping in to help. It was when the brute swung back, looking as if he aiming a punch at the kid, that Rufus stepped in. "Leave him alone and pick on someone your own size!" Bloody stupid, he thought, as the man's fist connected with the side of his head, leaving him blinking. He wasn't quite sure he dared return the favour - a slave thumping a free man was bound to get in trouble, after all! @Sarah
  8. To Charis, from your friend Rufus, greetings! I trust this finds you well. I have some good news to report: I have found your sister Ardra. She is known as Nymphias and is a slave in the household of Titus Sulpius Rufus, a senator. I have no news yet of your mother or brother, but your sister wishes you well and hopes that you will both be able to meet very soon. I will keep looking for your mother and brother and hope that I will be able to send you news of them soon. The above missive was sent scratched into the wax of a cheap plain wooden wax writing tablet, in script on one leaf and capitals on the other. @Sara
  9. Early April 74CE It was maybe a day or so after he'd been bought by his new master, one Octavius Flavius Alexander, cousin to the Titus Flavius Alexander he'd been lent to back in January for three days (three days of startling adventure, compared to anything Rufus had ever experienced before). He had been informed that his new master was a busy man, and had not been set to anything specific since his purchase, so had found himself helping round the house where an extra pair of hands was required, trying to get to know his fellow slaves, and to find a place in this new household. He was aware that his new master knew his abilities; they'd been written up and displayed for all to see, on a board around Rufus' neck - something that happened to every slave ever sold, as far as he could tell. But he hadn't been set to anything specific since his arrival. Whether that was because his new master was too busy, or merely wanted him to get to know how the household ran, or for some other reason entirely, Rufus had no idea. But now he had been summoned to the tablinum, the master's study, and he could not help wiping his hands on his clean new tunic. What if there had been some sort of mistake? Was he to be returned to the slave-dealer? Had he somehow displeased his new owner - which was entirely possible, of course, as he was still learning his way around the house and who everybody was (despite being a town house, it was far bigger than his old master's villa - but then, Octavius Flavius Alexander was a member of the senatorial class where Rufus' old master had been an equestrian). Was he, gods forbid, about to be told he should answer to a different name, even - it did happen, after all. "You sent for me, Domine?" he said, stopping just inside the tablinum, his hands folded neatly in front of him and his eyes down submissively. The mosaic of the floor was impressive, as was everything else in the house. His mouth was dry - why was it always easier to think that you'd done something wrong, when it might simply be that the master wanted to know how his new purchase was settling in? Because Roman masters didn't particularly care to know about their slaves' comfort - they bought slaves to make their own lives comfortable, why would they care about their slaves' comfort?! @Gothic
  10. Rufus' life had turned upside down without a moment's warning - his master's death, the funeral, the being sold to a slave-dealer (or his representative, or something of that sort), the (long, tiring, footsore) journey to Rome... He made no protest (it would be useless, anyway, and he knew this was just something that went with his condition as a slave) but was grateful to find that he had a little freedom at the slave-dealer's once he arrived in Rome. Apparently, the merchant used his own stock to see to his stock. Slaves like Rufus, who were used to it, knew what was expected of them, were employed in bringing food and water to those in the cages. Rufus, despite his own circumstances, couldn't help feeling sorry for them. Brought here from who knew where - there were dark-skinned Africans (possibly Nubians) and pale-skinned Celts. It was quite the babble of languages when they spoke, although they were quiet, on the whole. He couldn't help sighing as he reached the last cage with his water bucket. His feet hurt - he'd been able to rest, a little, but hadn't had that long before one of the guards or overseers or somebody (not the big boss, though) had grabbed him to take water around. He held the bucket steady, making sure that the dipper was within reach of the pretty young chalk-footed woman in the cage. He smiled at her, wondering how much Latin she could speak, if any. @Sara
  11. May 74 Rufus, being his new master's body slave and not his secretary (although things might still change, of course) had been sent away when his master's visitor arrived, with the admonition to remember to stay within call, but not so close the master would think he was deliberately eavesdropping. Eavesdropping was not something Rufus had ever felt particularly comfortable doing, and he was even less comfortable with the thought he might appear to be doing so, especially as he was still on trial to see whether he would be suitable in this position long-term or not. He was not about to risk anything, and had found himself a spot out of the way across the garden from the tablinum where his master was meeting his guest, where he could see his master and hear him call if he was wanted, but where he couldn't overhear any of the conversation. It was a nice shady spot of the garden under a vine trellis and Rufus settled down. He had been allowed to borrow a wax tablet and stylus (both cheap and plain, unlike the one the master used) in order to practise his writing - he could write, he was extremely fortunate in that, but it had been a while since he had and he did not want to find himself in a position where he was taking dictation or trying to write something up neatly and found himself wondering what way round the letter S went. And there were few enough other things he could do that would occupy him for more than a few minutes at most. He leaned back, enjoying the sun for a moment before he did anything. It was rare to have any time alone, especially now, and he appreciated every second he could get away from his master (although his master wasn't a bad master, quite the opposite. Everyone needed some sort of alone time sometimes, even slaves). It couldn't have been very long that he sat there before a shadow fell across his face and he blinked up, thinking at first that he had been summoned. The person looking down at him was the boy who'd accompanied master's guest, though, and he didn't look as though he'd come to call Rufus in to attend the master. "Hello," he said. Alone time or not, he didn't mind being interrupted by someone new, especially a fellow slave. "Care to join me?" He patted the bench beside him. @Chevi
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