I was apart of the war machine.
Though there was no real machine, just hundreds of thousands of men, all with barbaric interest. Blood lust, power hungry, armored gladiators. Screaming out into the battle field, farms set ablaze, families slaughtered, respectable people all tortured and treated like dogs, all for the glory of Rome!
I fueled the hate with my ignorance, I recognized otherwise peaceful groups as my enemy- because I was told so. I was told “the Roman life was superior to that of any other”. The constant slaughter for entertainment, the prostitutes, the slaves, everything that fed this horrid war machine- the same machine that starved the people of this very empire.
My people were convinced I was strong, convinced I was to be the one to take the world for Rome- I was feared, wanted dead, wanted, hated, ‘loved’. That last one is tricky though.. I’ve never had a single man nor woman besides my parents claim to love me with ever actually loving me.
The servants watch me with a hungry gaze, their ticket to the throne room, their step to royalty. The answer to all their woes is the one and only Andreas! Andreas the prince of Rome! For a long time I was convinced that indeed I was the answer to all woes, the simple cure, the only cure. It wasn’t long before someone proved me wrong, hurling a trident at my head, laughing at me making a mockery of me- and yet I was interested.
It was a taste of mortality, a glimpse as to where I stood anywhere else- I was addicted. It was a new thrill, someone hating me.. truly hating me and without ever hiding it in the face of danger. Ridiculing me at every chance.This all must make me sound like a masochist, but if you were fed lies, fake adoration and forced love, a sobering look at reality made you feel raw emotion.
Day after day, I’d submit myself to this, this constant barrage of spite and then oddly enough of gratitude- albeit small and hardly present in most instances. I finally recognized another person as a human being, something that I never knew I had craved after all these years.