Verenus stood on the outskirts of the forest, divested of his armour and his hands tightly bound behind his back. The war party had escorted him here, they on horseback while he on foot. It was clear that they meant to shame him, as prisoners held no standing among the Britons, but also to prove a point. Rome had set out to be the Briton’s masters, but now he stood lower than that of a peasant.
Verenus didn’t feel the barb as he should have. All he could think about was having to leave Aurelia defenceless with these barbarians and delivering the news of impending war to a commander who will not take this news well.
Verenus turned back to the war party, eyes searching for Aurelia. She was blessedly unconscious, slumped in the arms of Kailen, who was now to be her captor.
“I swear to the Gods, if you harm her or defile her in anyway, I will kill you.” Verenus promised in a steely tone of voice.
Kailen laughed bitterly. “I believe you, or at least i believe your intention. But do not worry yourself unnecessarily. I nor my men will defile her. That is a Roman pastime.”
Verenus shook his head in disgust. He would have argued against that accusation, but it would have been pointless. Arguing will only make them angry and they would in turn take it out on the only Roman left to them.
“Your army’s fort lies just over that hill.” Kailen pointed and Verenus followed the direction with his eyes. “No Britons will harm you, you have safe passage to deliver my message.” Kailen smirked down at him. “At least, for the time being.”
Verenus didn’t reply verbally, just nodded once before looking one more time at Aurelia. He turned sharply, making his way towards the fort and all the while, feeling their eyes burning holes into his back.
By morning, these hills will be swarming with Roman soldiers and the Silures better ride like the wind if they wanted to live another night. Much good it would do them.
Rome never forgave those who set themselves as its enemy.
Whatever was the driving force of their success, be it luck, divine providence or devilry, may it long continue, thought Kailen.
The storm had been a blessing, making short work of the Roman auxiliary replacements that would have numbered in the thousands. They could no longer leave a bloody trail of death and despair in their wake. Kailen’s war party only had to clear up the pockets of men that had survived.
Easy pickings, really. Nothing more than child’s play.
And now they have stumbled upon the ailing rag tag group of mundanes to reveal a paragon in the form of a woman. The enemy commander’s intended had literally fallen into his lap. Gods be good. She represented everything he had hoped for in starting this journey: bait to lure the Romans out into the open, away from their fortifications, and a chance to seek revenge for all theu had inflicted on their High King’s tribe. They will be crushed, he did not doubt it. He and his own men would crush them in such a way that history would remember it as a great British victory and the Romans would lose all taste for war on this shore.
It would be a day of days.
But before they could look to the future, they had to contend with the journey home. They must make haste, if they didn’t want a Roman shock group to intercept them. Of course, the whole Roman army on their heads before they could raise arms with their own people and sister tribes. Kailen was adamant not to make any mistakes that could cost him this victory.
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War Prize (A Roman Britain story)Historical Fiction
Aurelia, a Noble Roman woman, had heard of the savage British tribes, their mystic Celtic ways, and the battles the Roman army was fighting against them on their shores. The battles her soon-to-be Husband, Quintus Acquilla, was fighting in the name...