Happy Thursday! Below are the character introductions and fifteen questions (with answers) submitted by you guys—the fabulous readers— for Gaius and Allerix’s character takeover last Sunday. To all who joined them, a huge thank you! We had a blast. NOTE: Contains spoilers for Book 1 and 2.
[Gaius]: Greetings, plebians and common rabble. What? You’ve never heard of me? You haven’t noticed my dazzling portrait statues all over the damn city? *grumbles* If I must endure this proletariat nonsense, I’m 35 years of age and Commander of the Lucky Fourth legion, not to mention I’m second in command of Rome. Married to a lovely woman I was forced to wed. Best friend of a brilliant, campy lawyer. Owner of many pleasure slaves—boys and girls, of course. Head over heels for a beautiful barbarian lad I purchased at a posh auction in Rome. I also love my spotted African cat, stuffed dormice appetizers, and my golden horse, Xanthus. Hobbies, you ask? When I’m not off killing and enslaving heathens, I enjoy board games, reading Ovid, writing my version of the history of the wars (more a fucking chore than a hobby at this point), hunting for juicy boar in my private woodlands, swimming, well-crafted shoes, and sex. Lots of damn sex. And wine. Wine, sex, and more wine. I’m just a simple, red-haired Roman lad with huge testicles and a foul mouth. Give me your inquiries and perhaps I’ll answer.
[Allerix]: By Zalmoxis, how did I get here? Oh… right. Shit. Who am I? I survived the last war against the Romans, but I was captured, assaulted, and given to a slave dealer who shipped me to Rome. I’ve been alive for twenty-one—no, twenty-two years. I fancy boys instead of girls. My dead half-brother mocked and attacked me for my ‘unnatural behavior,’ while my Dacian father was constantly disappointed in his abnormal son. Father’s probably dead. But my Celtic priestess mother adores me, although I haven’t seen her since I was ten years. I have a younger sister, but she may be dead too. My country has been destroyed and taken over by the Romans. Rumors are there are a few surviving Dacians still living up in the Carpathian Mountains, but I’m not sure I believe the stories. My only purpose in life now, other than warming Dominus’s bed, is to kill the Roman king and achieve immortality. I like dogs (especially wolf dogs cause I used to have one as a pet), horses (especially the Roman’s black stallion, Ferox), practicing with weapons, and rabbit roasted on a spit. I want to fuck the Roman’s arse, but he won’t let me. Says it’s against the “rules” of the high and mighty Romans. I don’t understand these bizarre people wearing sheets and no trousers. If I could, I’d go home, but there’s nothing and probably no one left alive for me to go home to. I guess I’m just trying to make the best of the shittiest situation until I can stick a blade in their king. And the sex is great. Ssshh, don’t say anything, but I really, really want to try Dom’s sex sling. What do you want to know? Dom’s in a whole different wing of the mansion doing gods know what.
(1) What is Alle’s favorite food from his homeland that he misses a ton but has never told Gaius about?
A thick, creamy, pungent soup made from cow’s stomach and milk. It’s a holiday dish that reminds me of solstice feasts in the Great King’s hall. Just the memory of that flavor makes me sad now.
(2) What is Gaius’ reaction when Alle gets mope-y about missing his homeland? What does he do?
Hand’s him a cup of delicious Dacian wine, cause we’ve confiscated vats of it! Seems to make him sadder, though.
(3) Aside from sexy fun times, what do Alle and Gaius like to do together?
Hunt, read books, and play music… but most of all, practice with weapons.
(4) Gaius has a soft spot for Alle, this much is certain. Does Alle know this and does he ever exploit it?
I thought he did, and then the butcher locked me up in his underground slave prison. But he’s been nicer to me than he used to be once he decided to let me out.
(5) Alle, if the situation was reversed and Gaius was wearing YOUR bulla, would you be a kind but firm master, or a petty, demanding and wildly domineering one?
Even though a few Dacian knobheads I knew made lots of coin by capturing and selling people for the slave trade, I’ve never thought about what it would be like to actually own another person until I came to this evil city. If I had slaves, I’d set them all free, give them gifts, and hope they would still be my friends. Like how Dominus freed Max.
(6) Gaius, at an imperial banquet into whose cup would you slip a dose of Magic mushrooms then sit back and watch hi jinx ensue?
Ah, who says I haven’t? I might have put a wee dose of potion in Empress Plotina’s cup once. Less amusing than I’d hoped it’d be. She just spit more in everyone’s face and kept pointing at invisible Cupids she swore were flying about the imperial dining room. Marcus finally sent her to bed with much dramatic protesting from the cobra.
(7) If Lucius were still alive, would Gaius fall as fast for Alle as he did now or would it be more difficult for Alle to seduce him? After all Lucius is also one of a kind.
My dear Lucius had abandoned me long ago for his Caledonian boy. Until I met Alle, I hadn’t realized that I’d lost my adolescent affection for Luc a long time ago. But yes, our dear, dandy Luc was one of a kind. Thank gods his ghost is gone. I hope.
(8) When did Gauis realize that he fell in love with Alle, and knew his love for Alle was stronger than his feelings for Lucius?
The day I spotted him in the Dacian forest attacking a Roman supply chain. I knew I wanted him. I didn’t expect to fall so deeply in love with a barbarian. And now I’m breaking every damn law that matters to protect him.
(9) Why is it that Gauis, who has never cared about rules, still hold to that one rule that Alle cannot be the dominant with him sexually? Even Lucius let his pleasure slave, Bry, make love to him. So is Gauis’s love for Alle not strong enough for him to overcome his feelings about penetration?
I’m a patrician Roman man. Love has nothing to do with who does the fucking and who gets fucked. I should never have let Luc… shit, what’s done is done. But our dear Alle does seem to enjoy playing the part of Zeus. Hmm. Perhaps some day. My bum’s ready, but my stupid aristocratic pride has a long way to go before its ready to take a Dacian pole.
(10) For Alle: apart from Gaius (obviously), is there one guy from the mansion that Alle could be close to (as in a friend)? He was pretty friendly with our dear Nic, but I feel like he is quite excluded from the other slaves and it breaks my heart that he is so alone sometimes.
I really like Bryaxis, but he’s too much of a prick to be a dependable friend. Now that Gorgas is here at Gaius’s mansion to race chariots for Gaius’s Reds, I’m hoping we can rekindle our childhood friendship. He doesn’t trust me, though. I don’t really blame him.
(11) For Gaius: What are your real feelings for Publius Hadrianus? Sometimes we get the feeling you can’t stand him, and some other times you act quite like you’re a really fond older brother. Also, it seems that Gaius sees him as an incompetent, but we know that emperor Hadrian was one of the most respected emperor, so why does Gaius thinks so little of him?
Ah, Publius—my Greekling. Forced to be brothers, forced to be competitors for the throne. I love him. I hate him. I protected him from Father when we were young. Perhaps some day, the shithead will return the favor. But a good emperor? Poetry-penning Princess Publius? Don’t make me choke on my dormouse.
(12) For Alle: Do you think Varius hates you?
He punched me in face. He absolutely hates me. He hates every Dacian. Have your seen his nasty scar? A Dacian did that! *puffs chest out*
(13) Allerix: Do you pronounce your nickname Alle as Alley, Al, Aley or???
In Dacian, it’s pronounced Aley. Gaius calls me whatever he wants, but at least he stopped using that stupid “puppy” nickname.
(14) Gaius: How do you feel about Trajan?
Great emperor for Rome. Undeniably talented leader of the legions. Shitty, lecherous adoptive father. I’ve long forgiven him for what he did to me, but I’ll never forget. And I’ll never forget how he saved me (and Publius) and how he trained me for the job of an army commander. It’s damn complicated. But will I weep when he dies? I don’t know.
(15) Alle, what is your favorite Roman food that is totally disgusting that you thought you’d never like?
Don’t tell anyone, but I love the grilled lampreys Euphronia serves once in while. Weird, rubbery texture and smelly as old riding boots but the flavor is scrumptious. I only take one piece (all right, maybe 3) on those rare times she serves them to us because I don’t want to be greedy. But I will never eat a mouse. Not on purpose.