Working on the next chapter. Gaius’s POV. Starts with a scene in Scrofa’s tavern. If you haven’t read February and December (Dominus Calendar Series I), there are references in this bit to events in December. Just saying. 😉 Oh, and if you subscribe to the blog by email (not just a WordPress follow cause then I don’t have your email), I’ll send you a FREE PDF of February and December directly to your email inbox. Just click on the wee “Subscribe by email” button on the main blog page. ❤
More packed than usual, even for a balmy autumn evening, the tavern’s beams and walls rattled from random outbursts of laughter, ribald jokes, obscene curses, and the constant clinking of ceramic cups. Closing the door, Gaius kept his head covered and studied the crowd. Two days past, Lusius Quietus had sent word to meet him here tonight, and now the African scoundrel was nowhere in sight.
“Where’s the Berber?” he asked the nearest pissed veteran, alone and slumped over a gaming table. Stinking of stale ale and horseshit war stories, the amputee rubbed his ruddy face with his left hand. His only hand. A hand with three fingers and tiny stub where his thumb should have been. After a half-hearted attempt at a salute, the drunk tipped his chin towards the balcony above the bar.
“Alone?” Gaius asked.
Fucking daft question.
Instead of waiting for the obvious answer, Gaius tossed a piece of brass on the table in front of the plastered sod and climbed the wooden treads of the creaky staircase leading to the whores’ rooms upstairs. Without a word or warning, he shoved door after door open. Girls squealed and giggled, men grunted. On his third try, he found the dark-skinned general of the emperor’s auxiliary cavalry duly occupied as he’d expected.