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Out for a Day


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March 77AD

Ovinia was not much of a rider. She knew how to do it of course, but it wasn't a favourite past time - she far preferred visiting her friends, the gardens of Rome, the temples...but she also needed time away from Rome, space and air and no dark shadows where men and their knives could lurk. The man had been apprehended a few days prior but that was not enough. He should have been in the Tiber by now, and the weight that pressed against her shoulders and her chest might have lifted...but she had lost the vote and now he'd face a trial. She'd face a trial and be forced to weather the outcome whatever it was. She gulped in another breath and kicked her heels into the flanks of her horse, pressing him faster. She heard her guard yell in protest but she cared not. 

She had only been riding for a few hours and as she crested a small hill she swore she could still see the smoke and dirt of the city behind her. She wanted it to disappear, just for a day, just for a moment, but she and her horse  needed a rest and so she paused him on the crest, breathing deeply, letting her eyes drift shut and waiting for her escort - her guard and Lucia, to catch up with her. She shouldn't have  gone so fast but...it was exhilarating. It made her forget. She heard the familiar beat of hooves on packed dirt and fluttered her eyes open but the voice that greeted her wasn't her guard, nor Lucia and she gripped the reins tighter in momentary panic.

 

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