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 Category:  Fantasy Fiction
  Posted: September 14, 2014      Views: 876
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Chapter 7 of the book Vision and Sound: Their Stories
The Persians come to free there people from Roman servitude.
"Allutia's Betrayal & Regret" by michaelcahill

Two souls encounter each other in several lifetimes. Their connection is certain, but circumstance is always a factor in how that plays out.

Previously, Allutia and Tibertin discovered that there were feelings between them that could not be denied. Tibertin made overtures to Allutia, but she was not as open to them as he would have liked. She was after all one of his slaves. She had been well to do before the Roman Republic had defeated her country and subjugated her people. However, she couldn't deny that she had feelings for him. In the middle of their discussion, word of Persian troops advancing came to Tibertin. He dismissed Allutia to tend to this new threat. He didn't realize that Allutia would alert the sizable slave population that troops were on the way to free them. An organized slave rebelion in conjuction with an attack might prove to be more than Tibertin's army could withstand. We continue know as Tiberin considers his options.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The Persian Camp, less than a day from the city.

Near the point of dropping, the courier stood before Artabanus to give his report.
With a nod from Artabanus, he spoke. "The Romans are aware of our advance. However, they have come to awareness in the time it has taken me to bring this message. They hurry troops from the south and rally the city to arms. They are prepared, but not to Tibertin's usual standards."
Artabanus gestured to one of his footservants who escorted the exhausted courier to rest by a shade tree with a carved goblet of mead. It was from the general's private reserve and high praise for a job done well.
Artabanus turned to Prath, his top advisor, and spoke. "If only we could get word to the captives there. Can you imagine if they knew of our approach? They could be organizing right behind the Roman's backs. But, still if we are strong, they may yet play a role. We must be swift. If we are to breech the forces of Tibertin, then our captive people may yet taste some vengeance. Let us tarry no longer. My daughter, Allutia, awaits her father." I am no longer a foot soldier lost on a battlefield, Tibertin. I return as a general. I return to reclaim what is mine. "Advance!"

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Tibertin's chambers.

Tibertin paced alone in his chambers. Out! Leave my mind now, Allutia. He picked up the piece of pottery that had caused Allutia to laugh. He studied it briefly and set it down. He shook his head as though clearing it. It is war that must occupy my mind now. War, sudden and deadly, advancing even as I collect my thoughts. He began to picture the mountainous regions to the north and the valley that the Persian forces would be approaching through. There was no flanking point. But, at the same time that meant there was only one point of retreat for the enemy. Victory would be total. The mountains that protect them would trap them in a retreat.
He burst through the doors of his chamber in full military regalia. Thoughts of Allutia slipped into the back of his consciousness at the sight of his troops, alert and at the ready. It never entered his mind that Allutia was a Persian slave. It didn't occur to him that a Persian slave was fully aware that the Persian army was on its way to free them from bondage. 

~~~~~~~~The slave quarters

Allutia's heart ached with every beat. Joy could find no quarter there. She paced as activity whirled around her. This must be. The hundreds and thousands are the priority. She glanced at the energized people that bustled about. Yes, what is my life in comparison? A love that has no future? My father's blood enemy. Do you not realize any of this? I am Persian, Tibertin. Does that not occur to you? Am I to shield your plans from my people and condemn them? Would you?  
She joined the others as they made plans and stashed tools that could easily make a fine weapon. Implements used for clearing a forest could make short work of a man's limbs as well. These were plans that had occurred to them before. They had all tasted freedom and the hope of tasting it again burned in every single one of them. Talk of it never ceased. Planning for it never stopped. The dream that one day their countrymen would come to their rescue was a dream that wouldn't die.

~~~~~~~~Tibertin's Counsel Room

"Report". Tibertin was focused.
Bavarius fidgeted with the strap of his helmet, but only for a moment. "The southern troops are less than a day's journey. The courier was dispatched immediately with instructions. It is expected that they will arrive in advance of the Persians."
Tibertin gave no acknowledgement. He fixed his gaze on Cardasius. "And the forces here?"
"They are at the ready, Tibertin. Should the southern troops not arrive in a timely manner, they have the resolve to hold until they do."
"No! That is inadequate. I don't want to hold. I want to destroy! What of the guards that waste their times with the slaves? Surely no more than a handful of guards at the gates are necessary."
"Sir, it is not advisable to leave the slaves without guard. If they perceive rescue, there could be an uprising. That would be most unfortunate. They are indeed weak in resolve, sir. But, they are great in number. Their resolve might be kindled by thought of freedom."
"Nonsense. They are quartered away from all news of this. A minimal guard will suffice. I don't plan on waiting on the Persians. They will feel the force of my will long before they expect it. Prepare every soldier for battle. Prepare them now. We advance within the hour. They will never get close enough for the slaves to smell them."

Within an hour, Tibertin rode his steed in front of his troops. He gazed proudly over them in approval. They were among the best trained in all the Roman Republic. They had pushed into Persian territory beyond what any had dreamed possible. Tibertin's tactics were considered unusual at best, but no one could argue with the great success he enjoyed.
Tibertin turned and faced forward. He drew his sword and pointed outward. As one, the army moved swiftly. Tibertin planned to strike and end the threat before it even became one.

~~~~~~~The slave quarters

No notice was made of the light guard that had been placed on the gates that contained the slaves. There were no more than a few dozen soldiers between the entire slave population and control of the city. The soldiers weren't aware of how well armed the slaves were. They also weren't aware of the state of readiness the slaves were at. The slaves had no idea that Tibertin had led the entire army out of the city leaving it unprotected. It would be most of a day before the southern forces arrived in the city. Until that time, the city was in jeopardy of being taken over by the slaves. It was a simple matter of the slaves becoming aware of that fact.


The book continues with Born Enemies: Soon To Meet. We will provide a link to it when you review this below.

Author Notes
I'm letting this go where it will. Wonderful input that is helping me so much. I can't thank you enough.

Pays one point and 2 member cents.

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