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Jannus


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Jannus

22 | April | Slave | Messenger/Body-slave | Bisexual | Wanted | Hans Matheson

 

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Personality

As a child, Jannus had a sunny disposition, often choosing to see the best in things and eagerly doing whatever his master told him to. He always treated the concept of Rome with awe and great respect. As he grew older, he had the hope of bettering himself to the point where his master could free him. He worked hard with the little spare time he had to learn basic literacy, and he listened to his master’s musings on current politics with a careful ear. However, his first master never freed him, and when he was resold, Jannus’s worldview shattered. Four years later, his disposition is very different. 

He remains confused about his place in Rome, and while he is careful to maintain a sense of detached professionalism and he is typically polite to the point of meekness, there is a mire of impatience within him. When he completes tasks, it’s always with a sense of urgency to them, and it seems as though he’s lost something, but can’t remember what. He cares both too much when it comes to pleasing whoever owns him, and never enough. Without orders, he grows bored and listless; if he cannot live up to the ideal of a proper servant, he is nothing. Being around people gives him energy, yet he prefers to be alone. What would be the point in trusting others if he’ll get taken away again? He finds great difficulty in making decisions for himself by himself.

When around the very few he trusts, he may reveal his dry sense of humor.

 

Appearance

Jannus has pale skin, dark brown hair that really needs a trim, and grey eyes. His build is more on the powerful side, though he can be unusually agile. As with most Gallic men, he is noticeably taller than the average Roman. Covered by his plain tunic are a few uneven, jagged scars across his back. He does not smile often, and when he does it is usually forced.

 

Family

Father: Prasutagus, deceased

Mother: Aucissa, deceased

Siblings: Minura, Vassura, Eburus, all deceased

Spouse: None

Children: None

Extended family: Esico, deceased

Other: N/A

 

History

55-62 CE

Jannus was born in the far north, where snow coated the ground in winter and the air had a constant draft about it. He remembers little about his father and mother, only vague impressions of their faces illuminated by firelight, pale oval shapes with angular features different from the people he sees in the streets of Roma today. Sometimes, he still dreams of his old life, from before he was taken. However, none of it makes sense. All the images escape him, and when he finally does manage to gather a few together, they’re damaged. 

In the deepest depths of his mind, he recalls a rainy day where everything smelled like soot. Being curious, not frightened, by the commotion happening in his family’s camp. Seeing a cavalryman, short but strong, heading toward him and plucking him easily from the ground to be carried back. Earning his new name and being reborn as Jannus, a slave.

63-71 CE

After a boat ride, during which he was terribly sick, and a long series of transactions between traders, Jannus arrived in Rome proper. To think that the trees in his homeland were the tallest thing he’d seen until he encountered the buildings in the city! Jannus stops crying at night, and reasons that this life was an act of mercy, meant to show him true civilization. 

His master was a kindly old man whose own sons were now grown and away fighting, and needed someone to carry messages and help the larger body slave take care of him. The pain of missing home turned to a dull ache. Jannus became invested in learning to read, to decipher the codes that true Romans used to communicate with each other. On trips to the market and delivering messages, Jannus examined the bits of graffiti that littered the corners of unkempt places, studied the painted advertisements for gladiator tournaments. After some time, he picked up a stick and slowly, carefully, scraped out his first sentence: 

“My name is Jannus.”

The master is patient. He smiled at Jannus, and gave the boy new tunics as he grew taller. He taught Jannus how proper men act, the correct mindset for a slave to have. Jannus may be the spitting image of a barbarian, but there was no harm in him learning the common discourse of civilized men. This was the closest thing he had to a father. 

Of course, not all good things last. His master died from old age, and while selling off his property, his children decided to sell Jannus as well. It did not matter how Roman he acted. In a time when he was supposed to be starting a new career, his own ended.

71-76 CE

The second master was younger and stricter, growing impatient quickly; the first master was perhaps too forgiving towards a slave, and Jannus found himself getting a beating for some of his foibles with the second. Luckily, these were rare. Jannus looked around at the other slaves and realized just how different his appearance was from theirs. His form is too tall, his skin too pale, his eyes a sickly blue. Yet he continued as a runner nonetheless. His mistakes grew fewer and far between, and the other slaves accepted him as one of their own. Still, he remained all too painfully aware that no matter how civilized he wanted to become, it would never stop others from seeing him as a barbarian.

He ended up being sold mainly because the dominus grew too tired of him.

76 CE

Jannus was resold near the end of the year, and now he waited for another to take him. A man arrives, another in a long line of customers. It doesn’t matter who Jannus is bought by, he just needs to get out of this place. The man asks him his experience, and Jannus answers what has been drilled into him for almost his whole life.  

The customer says he’ll take both slaves. His praenomina intrigues Jannus. Maybe the third time’s the charm.

@Gothic

Insignia | PST | PM

Edited by Insignia
Clarity, minor fixes to timeline, added family names
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