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Titus Calpurnius Praetextatus

Titus Calpurnius Praetextatus

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  • TITUS CALPURNIUS PRAETEXTATUS

13 | 7th october, 61CE | Scion of a senatorial family | Child | In discernment | Wanted - Sharpie| FC: Thomas Brodie-Sangster in The Last Legion (no idea what he'll grow into but this is more than wholesome enough)

 

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Personality.

Titus is very inquisitive and intelligent -- which, given that he's a child, you'd think would lead to problems. As an oldest son, though, and especially the oldest son of a Senator, he's internalized an understanding of his place in the familia and sort-of-kind-of in the broader gens, as far as he can keep straight at the age of 13.
He does have a charmingly old-fashioned, slightly naive outlook on mores -- the sort of thing that would come from spending much of early memory in one's grandfather's house, and be strengthened by the abiding sense of uncertainty generated by moving with as much relative frequency as Titus' family has.

Being surrounded by stories of ancestors' accomplishments, heroic military conquests, and the glory of the state was a constant against the backdrop of a slightly tumultuous early life; it therefore hasn't occurred to him and likely won't until much later in life that the social order isn't exactly great for everyone. Or maybe it has, maybe he's overheard Tiberius' house slaves talking, or picked up something in the street -- one never does predict all the uncannily adult conclusions children can come to.
Regardless, he squares a semi-denied awareness of the danger of the world around him (if not yet the scope of injustice that can happen in it) with his early childhood dreams by hoping to be the Big Man and do the Big Thing One Day, like most prepubescent aristocratic Roman boys do.

Obviously Nothing Intriguey And Bad Will Happen To Him, even though it's happened to others before.
His friends won't ever hurt him because he makes friends carefully. He stayed out of the way as much as he could and let the adults do adult things without snooping when he shouldn't (... mostly), so he's not a bad kid. He's a good kid. Good people make good senators, right? For the people? The other people. Yeah.
The path is laid out for him and he just has to follow it -- and if he's honest and forthright and makes his offerings on schedule well then great, he's going to be a great leader and do great things and his family will be super proud of him and then he'll find a wife and build a home and live in that home forever and ever and never move. Right?

Titus did put on a brave face during the family relocation he was old enough to remember, and superficially seems to have dealt well with his father's spotty presence in his life, but this kind of thing tends to affect children strongly, and his mother's general worry about his father and the family's social position has given him a worried kind of insecure attachment to the concept of Aulus specifically and home in general. He's very protective of his things and his relatives (particularly his little sister), and although of course he's being socialized to impassive stoicism in the face of all that worry, sometimes it manifests in face-affecting ways.
This wouldn't be so bad if he'd let himself be a child and learn at his own pace, but of course, like most bright oldest sons, he's convinced that he's basically a grown-up already even though he still has a bulla and isn't technically culpable for pinching sweetcakes from the kitchens yet. As Basically A Grown-Up he needs, of course, to maintain social face. His father went to war like three years after this age! He's not letting himself look bad by comparison!

That concern about face bleeds over into how he makes friends already -- he's too sweet and guileless to actually think in prejudiced terms or be deliberately mean yet, but he knows on some level which kids he's not supposed to hang out with because they're Bad Kids, and separately which kids would make bad (i.e. negative-face-generating) playmates, and on top of that he's pretty selective about who gets to get close. He already separates "rando I met" from "potentially useful acquaintance", "useful acquaintance" from "amusing acquaintance","useful associate" from "dangerous associate" and so on like an adult , filtering information he shares with each accordingly -- surely Papa would be proud.
Wouldn't he?

The poor thing just wants to find a permanent place to fit in and please everyone -- the trouble is that this also struggles within him with the awareness that he's supposed to sometimes make choices that hurt people to help more people, and that sometimes the best thing to do for someone you love is the thing that Doesn't please them.
He probably doesn't really have a solid handle on what makes him "him" yet -- he likes studying, especially rhetoric and mathematics, but he's very hard on himself and has had his intellect emphasized all his life as his best quality, partially because he was somewhat sickly while he adjusted to Raetia. As a result, he has an unfortunate tendency to play it safe and give up on things outside that sphere if he thinks he could embarrass himself doing them, and conversely can be a bit excessively confident in his intellectual skills. He prides himself, rightfully but maybe a smidge destructively, on not being a snitch.

He's also got a sore spot -- insinuating that he can't do something related to the occupation he sees himself in in the future is a quick way to upset him profoundly and maybe get punched, if you're within the narrow but well populated list of social standings he considers punchable. That's accompanied by a bit of an inflated sense of honour and patristic concern; Titus likes to assert himself as leader of whatever group he plays in, oblivious to the fact that not everyone welcomes his leadership or his little nose poking into everything.


 

Appearance

Titus is still a minor and accordingly dresses appropriately: knee-length tunic, cloak if it's cold, both made to last. He tries not to get dirty and seems a bit averse to dirt in general, but inevitably there are still mishaps. He tries to be dignified when he's out in public wearing the freeborn child's toga praetexta, at least, and he's got eating in it on formal occasions down.  Mostly.

He hasn't hit puberty yet, so he's small and compact, with proportionately long limbs that presage a very awkward and very lanky adolescence. He has a furtive kind of glance and fidgets under stress, but smiles easily and generally appears to be very earnest and honest. His hair is a sort of ash- or strawberry-blond, depending on the lighting, and his eyes are a bright hazel, almond-shaped. He's maybe about three foot ten and clearly still growing into both his limbs and his ears.

Family

Father: Aulus Calpurnius Praetextatus

Mother: Horatia Justina

Siblings: Calpurnia Horatia 

Spouse: -

Children: -

Extended family
Tiberius Calpurnius Praetextatus, Aurelia Faustina [paternal grandparents]
Calpurnia Praetextata [doting paternal aunt]

 

Other: N/A

 

History

61CE - Birth. 
62CE - Senatorial purges. Titus' father flees Rome under cover of darkness, leaving him and his mother temporarily now to try not to be forced to leave them rather more ... permanently later.
63CE - Aulus does things that Titus has no means to comprehend yet in Germania and later Britain; meanwhile, the small Calpurnia is born. Titus is thrilled, as much as a one-and-some-to-two-year-old can be; there's oddly not much of the typical jealousy over attention.
70CE - Aulus reappears from the military campaign void, then assumes governorship of and takes the family to Raetia. Titus is nine-ish. Nine-ish is old enough to be a little shaken, and to realize that one's sister might be shaken more, on the supposition that girls and baby kids are more fragile than whole grown nine-year-old boys.
74CE -The family returns to Rome. Titus has a little bit of trouble adjusting, having picked up social norms that could be considered somewhat dated and rustic while living in Raetia, but the promise of finally seeing the place he was born and will come to join the ruling class of is enough to make it easier. He's a quick learner and has all the tutoring he could possibly need... but who knows what sort of influences he might encounter here? 

Mim | EST | modernist baba yaga#0721 [Discord]

 

 

 

 
Edited by Mim
Fixing images
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