Agorix! Agorix wheeled around and spotted Octurous starring at him intently. Yes my captain? Agorix walked toward his Roman commander. Octurous armor was always clean and well oiled, and Agorix found Octurous calm but defiant behavior during the Germanic siege slightly unnerving. For that last four days, the barbarian hordes had laid siege to the small Roman fort. Twice Germanic warriors had breached the thin walls, and twice Octurous had led his legionaries in crushing the impending slaughter. Agorix, Octurous grabbed Agorix by the bicep and pulled him close. There is an evil in this camp and no knowing how long until it betrays us all. No food, only water. Here, under the shroud of darkness, run and do not stop until you reach Cesar. He and his Romans are only days journey to the south guarding the river camp. My men can stop the barbarians, but we can not break this attack with our current numbers. There is food and supplies for two more days. Octurous quickly glanced around. Time is the only advantage those foolish bastards have. Agorix quickly took the parchment requesting that young Cesar bring forward his legions and destroy the enemies army for the glory of Rome. Octurous vowed to his fiercely loyal troops that once Cesar arrived, they would join their Roman brothers in crushing the sniveling Germans, that their glorious victory would reach the ears of the Senate and the streets would be filed with the cries of cheering and dancing women. Two days past and the sound of Roman feet marching to the aid of their brothers could not be heard. Had Agorix been captured, had Cesar marched to a new location? These thoughts raced through Octurous mind. Within hours all the camps supplies would be exhausted and moral would decline sharply. Once again Octurous addressed his troops. Men, sons of Romulus, hear me and fear not that which lies outside these walls. Cesar is our brother and a true Roman, he would not abandon us even under pain of death. These Germans are a worthy foe, this is true, but they have been led here by impotent fools. Rest this night, for tomorrow we will eat, drink, and tell the stories of our brave and fallen! A voice boomed from the gathered solders. For the glory of Rome! The legionaries cheered. And for the pleasures of the woman. Octurous added sending the men into an almost riotous cheer. Octurous knew his friend would never leave a fellow Roman to the whims of the Germans, Octurous retired to his tent for the evening. Captain, may I join you? Proximos voice came from the other side of the cloth flap that acted as a door. Octurous opened the flap and gave the young soldier an odd look. Proximo, my dear friend, you are never unwelcome at my table. Proximo stepped in with a very solemn look. Captain, where is Cesar?! The hordes grow restless, no doubt they will attack again with the first signs of light! Octurous sat down in his small wooden framed canvas chair. Then when Cesar arrives the barbarians flanks will be wide open for attack and our men and the men of Cesar will unite once again among the bodies and bloody dirt. Do not fear Proximo, we will live to fight again. The night came and past, and as the sun began its long journey west, the screams of the fanatical Germanic warriors could be heard raising from the nearby forest, still, no Cesar. Raise the alarm! Take your positions men! Prepare to repel the attackers! Octurous climbed the command tower in the middle of the camp to see over the small wooden wall. Damn you Cesar, why do you tease us so? Octurous gazed at the charging army. Only one ram? What trickery is this? Fools. Octurous looked down at Proximo. My friend, their testing us, only one ram. Proximos face showed confusion and he turned to the front gate as if he could see through the wood at the single ram coming the make war. Octurous raised one finger and laughed. Just one. Have your men on the front gate Proximo and double the convergence forces. Aye Captain. Proximo gave the order for one company (80 men) to stand 50 feet away in front of and facing the gate in a very tight formation. On either side of the gate, 20 feet away stood 120 men (one and a half companies) ready the crush the surging barbarian horde. Keep an eye on those fools. Im going to join my men in the fight. Octurous lead scout popped to attention and acknowledged his captains order. The battle raged on for hours, the barbarian warriors trying to force enough of their men inside the Roman camp the even out the numbers, but to no avail. Evening was drawing close and once again Octurous was victorious. However, now there was no food or drink left for the troops to regain their strength with and some of the men had to tear their clothes to bandage their brothers wounds. Octurous has retired to his small tent once more. Suddenly, the tent flap flew open and Proximo stormed in. What is this Octurous? If you know something you will tell me now. Octurous shifted his weight in his chair and stared at Proximo without emotion. What do you want me to say? I am at as much a loss for understanding as you Proximo. The only thing I can say is that Agorix was captured or killed. How are the men? The men are happy we won again today. But now, if Cesar will not help us, we will all slowly die in pain. CESAR .Cesar would help, us if only he knew. Octurous stood up and took the most commanding stance he could manage. Then what, what do we do Captain? This question would haunt Octurous all night. Morning came and Octurous addressed his troops yet again. Hear me Romans, we have been cheated of this victory. The Germans have worked their dark magic and blinded our allies to our plight. You have trusted me with your lives many times before, today is no different. Pack up the camp Octurous voice quivered slightly. Pack up the camp, and prepare to march. Octurous and his men had been defeated in battle before, but with Cesar, of all Romans, so close by to have to concede a loss was unbearable. Octurous! Proximo rode up to Octurous side. Let me ride out with you. No dear friend. Octurous never took his gaze off the battered front gate. If the Germanic captain will not accept my conditions for surrender, no doubt they will attack the camp once again. I need you to lead my men to victory Proximo, fight to the last man. Octurous head guard rode up. Are you ready captain? Octurous nodded his head and looked Proximo dead in the eye. To the last man Proximo. In the end, Octurous and his men were allowed to return to Roman lines with safety, the barbarian escort kept any would be attackers from doing so. The only reason the Germanic commander agreed to the terms of the surrender, much less the surrender itself, because he thought that even a woman would have been more heroic, and the Senate agreed. Not only had Octurous surrendered a fort that would have allowed Romes armies to push deep into the Germanic lands, but Octurous had allowed the barbarian tribes to capture valuable military maps. The Senate coined Octurous as a traitor and jailed him. For two weeks Octurous was left in a small cell, many nights with out food or water until one night.