senatus populusque romanus [the glass onion]

 

While all those who knew or knew of Jonathan took news of his possibly impending doom (if it occurs, because “doom” has a connotation of fate to it; which is: jonathan would meet doom only if he met his death, and few had made up their minds as to how they felt. In fact most hadn’t thought of it until some time ago when Julian almost may have died himself, which would have been way more ironic that it ever could have been doom, and Julian would die deaths after more eternally crackling like electrons just before they cross what had been called the event horizon until Stephen Hawking got his brain on it…)

Jonathan’s thing wasn’t much-regarded in his circles. Or layers.

The Glass Onion was a place around which people have gathered for many years. Julian (Jonthan never bothered to ask his real name) had been first, at a time Jonathan believed himself to be the only.

It seems Jonathan’s god is a jealous god, or perhaps other things and all of them bad – It had said “–You have a pet now. Be Jonatahan.”

The voice left. And as one who knew him personally, Jonathan would be the last to join with those in entertaining that one’s thoughts may in part or whole, be those of God, and they would not be the wiser.

…Jonathan knew God could easily do this in part or in whole, and felt he would not.

God seemed to care about humans only in that he cared enough not to step on his ants as they shuffled the grains of sand here and there.

…A man who called himself – actually, of course he cared more to be called this moniker by others than himself, but his narcissism didn’t improve with his change in nomenclature – The First of Equals liked all the things he was supposed to, raised in a society raised on the history of Rome and the use of a certain title he, seemingly on a whim, hadn’t thought to bring up until a funny thing happened in the forum. …The Senate, that is:

“First, today, I renounce all titles except Princeps Civitatus.”

“To whose Marc Antony?”

“To your Lepidus!”

“Caesar, your – sir – I demand an apology for this mockery against your person.”

“More than your own? …Because ‘Lepidus’ might just stick, Davidius.”

“Furthermore: I decree Davidius shall now informally be known as Lepidus until such time as we are not amused!”

The chamber’s soot-clouds lifted and light laughter replaced worry. …Although they still expected a damned good speech.

While jokes at the usual deaths of others through careful insinuation (all in fun) was Caias Maximian Justinian Augustus Caesar’s most feared arrows in his quiver, speeches won him all. …No, a joke here and a stiletto ‘tween the ribs there was fantastic, but to win over the Propulusque took…

He didn’t quite know. He spoke extemporaneously and at length among literally everyone, and to no one save himself. At this time he’d bought enough of his own press to believe he truly is inspirational.

And sure, it’s quite true.

But Justinian found Rome growing tiresome. They needed no slaves, since no one ate, no one drank – no one needed anything. But people want things, and to want what you do not have is to belittle yourself, idolize an object, and make at least one person your enemy.

Justinian announced that he would announce a voyage seeing every coast of Their Sea.

Because Justinian was a lame duck if he didn’t find barbarians to kill.

“Let the Vestals pray upon this, the augers be taken, have the guy with the bronze bull fucking roasted in it for the sick swine he is, and have Lepidus sign my name to all things that do, none that do not – right, Davidius? Because no one wants another raise on piss tax, do they?”

“Apparently they do not, Augustus, though they cannot and do not, and so do not pay. Your squire meant it as an opportunity to teach one of the finest coins of phrase–”

“–A phrase about a coin. Was it Vespasian who had his son smell a sesterce the same tax brought? When it was inoffensive, Vespasian declared for all history that money has no smell. And money, and all things good and right and those things that are the fruits of power rampant are to be ours and the Republic, the Senate, the People of Rome shall be known to all people in all places and our words will be curses – Rome will be their name for Hades, Justinian their devil, our freedom their bondage – What is ours will be ours because it is so!”

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