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An afternoon of liberty


Attis
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(November 74)

Granted, Rome was not as cold as the wastes of Britannia, but Attis had still wrapped his warmest cloak - his only cloak, were the truth known! - around himself as he took full advantage of the afternoon off his master had granted him, and headed out of the house, wandering wherever he took a fancy. He could count on the fingers of one hand the number of times he'd had the opportunity to do that, and still have three fingers left over.

Today, apparently, his feet wanted to explore the Forum Boarium, so he headed down the hill, past the packed insulae on the lower slopes of the Aventine, passing the Circus Maximus (no races today, apparently, or he might have gone in and watched the carnage of the chariots) and crossed the Aqua Appia to the traders, hawkers and general crowds of humanity in the Forum Boarium.

He stopped to buy something to eat from a hot food stall, and let his attention be captured by a group of street performers in their gaudy costumes and painted masks, purporting to tell the story of Alexander the Great, or somebody - he missed the introduction over the sounds of the crowd.

 

@Echo

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Annis actually flourished in this sort of weather - it reminded her of home, just like the mistlike rain that sometimes fell this time of year did. But more than making her happy, being reminded of Britannia depressed her. It just reminded her that she wasn't home with her loved ones, but instead stuck being a show pony for the horny men of Rome. She supposed she only had herself to blame for that. It was her plan to storm that fort, her fault that she was injured and captured and enslaved by that onerous Longinus. 

As she walked around the city, she found herself glowering at everyone around her at the memory of her capture. She wasn't quite recovered from the earthquake - her body had healed, sure, but she still woke up from nightmares of shaking earth, buildings crashing down upon her head, suffocating on dust. All because of that fateful day, all those years ago. She wondered how Rome had changed her. Just as she was cursing Longinus for the umpteenth time in her head, her eyes happened to fall on a familiar face - Longinus' slave, Attis. Her eyes narrowed in dislike and she decided to fall into line behind him. "Attis," she said coldly in greeting. 

@Sharpie

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Attis had not expected anyone to be behind him, had certainly not expected anyone to follow him, so when someone said his name - and in about the most unfriendly tone he had ever heard! - he jumped and spun round.

It was a woman's voice that had addressed him, but he wasn't sure he could remember the woman in question. She seemed somehow familiar, though, and she certainly knew him, but it was only the way her eyes narrowed that brought the full recollection back. She had been a prisoner, had bested a young legionary, and Longinus had seen potential in her to be a successful gladiatrix.

"Annis," he said in return. In any other circumstance, he'd be amused at the similarity of their names, different only in the double consonant. She spoke his name with the short consonant, as if it were only spelled with a single 'T', whereas he lengthened the consonant sounds of her name, pronouncing both exactly as he would any other double consonant in his own native Latin.

"You look like you've stubbed your toe or something," he added, a little nonplussed at the extremely unfriendly look on her face. Why bother him? It wasn't as though he'd had anything to do with - anything. He was just a slave, after all.

 

@Echo and OMG I am SO sorry!! I must've read this ages ago and completely forgotten to post a reply!!! Hope it's not been so long you've given up on it.

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