Titus Valerius looked out over the grey water of the Adriatic Sea. The view was as bleak as his prospects. It had been a year since he had seen Rome and his beloved Domitilla.
When he had joined the army he had dreamed of travelling the world, amassing victories and returning home triumphant. With the Roman Gods on his side he could have retired a well-rewarded legionnaire. With money rewarded he could afford to overlook Domitilla’s poor background and lack of a dowry.
Then Caesar had invaded Rome. Valerius’ misfortune was to have been stationed in the capital at that moment. Pompey fled to Greece, taking with him all the legions he could muster and leaving Rome to the invaders.
Months passed in Greece while the politicians argued and postured. Then Caesar crossed the sea to confront Pompey. The Roman Civil War had begun.
And now here they were camped around Dyrrhachium with no sign of an end to the siege. Caesar surrounded them on land, his fortified wall sealing them in to their coastal haven. Pompey’s advantage was having the sea at his back and a supply route for his ships. The battle was one of attrition. Neither of the great imperators showed any sign of blinking.
The sun began to set over the dull sea. Soon Aquila would arrive to take over the lookout for the night. Valerius had only his ration of bread and a hard bed to look forward to.
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