The Barbarian (Casca, Book 5)
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The plains of Parthia were littered with the bodies of the dead and dying, as Casca moved away from the battle. Rome did not take desertion lightly, and while they couldn’t kill The Eternal Mercenary, they could make life very uncomfortable….
His only escape is into the Northlands beyond Germany, to lands lovely with fjords – and horrible with blood lust.
Lulianius had been murdered and later the praetorians were exiled to within a hundred miles of the city with the warning that if any should return they would be put to death. Severus had formed a new guard of his own men and the senate had confirmed his claim as emperor; but before July he'd had to leave for the east to deal with Niger. Three engagements had been fought, the last of which took place at Issus, where Niger had been killed. It had taken Severus another two years to pacify the
you what I'll do. You can winter here and we'll see how it works out. I'll supply your food and drink and if you work out all right, there'll be something to put in your purses when the spring comes. Now, what could be fairer than that?" Glam looked at Casca. They read each other the same and agreed to the old bandit's terms. They were shown to the bachelor males' barracks. They were to share a straw, thatch-covered, stone shelter with another twenty or so regulars that rotated their duty
a spy for Rome. He knew of the talks between my emissaries and those of Icenius, and has tried to subvert the alliance by disaffecting the loyalties of my daughter, turning her young head with smooth words and lies. Only the sharp eyes of the druid, Hagdrall, have prevented him from being successful in completing his plan to kidnap my child and take her to the slave pens of Rome." He called upon the priest to stand. Hagdrall did so. "Is this not true, priest?" Hagdrall drew his scrawny
Saxons, one came on with a half-hearted sweep of his long sword, but Casca could see in the man's eyes that he was already dead in his mind. So to save the poor soul from any further confusion, Casca dispatched him with little effort, blocking the long sword. Then with a single long step inside the man's guard he thrust his own short sword up at an angle where it could reach the doomed warrior's heart with little trouble. The man coughed up a spurt of blood and died without further ado. The
valuable of all, silk. A pound of the fine material was equal in value to a pound of gold. In December or January, the ships would set sail again to let the changing currents of the winds return them home, from whence their previous cargo would eventually find its way to the bazaars and markets of Rome itself. Trade was the life blood of the empire. Without it, the boundaries of the empire would soon have shrunk until it contained no more than the Seven Hills of Rome itself. One may take a land