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Erotic Death Tales by Hitomi
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                                                                   "Polyxena, Princess of Troy"                          "Cassandra"
"Etain"
(adapted from the film “Centurion”)

They took away my poetry. They took away my songs. They took away my laughs, my moans of pleasure,
my curses in rage. I lost these when they cut off my tongue.
They also took away my virginity, my honour, my pride and my rightful inheritance.
Who would bow to a mute as a ruler of the tribe when my father would one day pass to the world of our
ancestors?
They even took away my identity, that I was no longer a Pict, never a true Roman.
They thought that once they had deprived me of all these, I would be meek as one of their dogs, ready to
do their bid for an occasional bone, that I would scout for them, kill for them whoever they wanted dead.
But there was one thing they forgot to take away.
My determination to seek vengeance.


My name is Etain, or was. They never called me by that name now, only addressing me as the Pict bitch.
And I lived up to that name. I had slept with over a hundred Romans, soldiers, gladiators, centurions,
generals and even the governor. I was frequently a wager, a prize for the strongest man in a bawl fight, or in
a throw of dice Sometimes I willingly crawled into a bed. They said my body stank but they used it anyway.  
In return, if I pleased them enough, they would tell me things they wanted to brat about: their weapons, how
they fought, how their legion would march and make camp, their past glories and nightmare disasters.

I learned, in silence. I waited.

There were more than fifty people in the hall, drinking bawling, indulging in pleasures of the flesh. They did
not mean a thing to me, no more than boring worms that lived and died under wet soil without seeing
sunlight. To me, they were my foes, oppressors of my people, scums whom I had to play submission until
the goddess of fortune would smile to me and let me have my revenge.  They did not know me, not other
than a captured Pict board who could ride and scout and fight and fuck.  At least a dozen of the men here
had used my body, which could drive them to nuts, first by the smell they found pungent and after I had
been drilled into the practise of taking baths, by the wild beauty, like a thorough bred war-horse that any
warrior would learn to admire and treasure.  I let them have their ways with me, neither aroused nor found
repulsive. I would lay silent, my limbs spread wide as if a corpse in a battlefield littered with the fallen.  I did
not moan as they would desire me to, nor could I even if I had wanted to.  I usually did not fight back or even
blinked an eye-lid when they took me.  In time, most of them lost interest in me  Who but one sick in the
mind would want to make love to an unresponsive corpse?
They let me pass through them, and made crude remarks and jokes behind my back.  Sometimes, I think
they mistook me for being deaf as well as mute.  Or they never cared.  
Neither did I.
Then, I saw him across the room. And he saw me.
It was instant recognition.  From the very first eye-contact, we knew our lives would be entangled, in lust,
hatred, destruction and even more disturbing, love.
Love---something I had tasted only among my kins so long ago. Between my sister Aeron and I , and to a
lesser extent, from my father, Gorlacon, chief of our tribe.
But this feeling was different.
We both felt it, strong, destructive, irreversible.
Something inside told me to run, flee.
“Either you flee oryou will die in his hand.” I heard the one inside me sending the dire warning.
“I will not flee.”
“Then, you will die.”
“I will kill him.“I said.
She laughed.  I ignored her.
We began to move in the same direction, skirting the tables of half-drunk soldiers and whores towards the
exit to the corridor where some kind of decent privacy could be found.  
He reached there slightly ahead of me, waiting.
We gazed into each other’s eyes.
I felt the wolf in me, the eagle in him, the strongest on land and in the air.
I knew he saw the same things.
Without a word, we slipped behind the heavy curtain that separated the hall from the dimly lit corridor.  We
walked in silence.  Without a sound between us, we proceeded towards the small chamber we knew
deserted.
Once inside, we turned towards each other.
He let me undress his tunic first, revealing his board chest with its many battle scars.  I traced them with my
fingers.  Which of these were made by the weapons of my people? How many of them he had personally
butchered?
I should have tried to kill him to avenge our fallen.  Instead, I let him undress me. The wolf-skin that wrapped
around my breasts were peeled off me, flung to one side.  I had no battle scar, not yet.
He played with my tits, squeezing them lightly as if trying to milk me. I did not try to evade.  My eyes were
fixed onto his, a fire that threatened to burn its marks onto him but only found his own pair of eyes of icy
fathomless water.  For the flick of an eye-beat, there was this sudden recognition, of a past life, lives,
passionate and turbulent and blood…
He grasped my upper arms and pulled me towards him. My breasts were crushed against the muscles of his
chest..  Still I gazed at him, my breathing heavier now, as if challenging him to hurt me, to kill me.  I knew he
was tempted to do so, for he also must have seen what destiny had prepared for us.  It troubled him but like
me, he was too stubborn to take the easy way out.  And so, we made love, or to be more precise, I let him
rape me.
I did not moan.
But this time, I really wanted to.

My chance finally came.
The Ninth was ordered to march north to subdue our land.
Through the governor, I was assigned as one of the scouts to find paths for the legion.
Almost from the start, he viewed me with complete distrust. By this time, I had found out his name: Quintus
Dias, a centurion who had recently joined the Ninth, after his escape from a slaughter in the north,
presumably by the men under my father.
But he was only a centurion and he had no power to overrule the decision of General Titus Flavius Virilus,
who waved off his protest.
Titus did not trust me either, but he found me useful.
“If this girl is a Pict spy, we can also use her by NOT following what she advises.” The old fox chuckled.
Again, he had forgotten that I was only mute, not deaf.
“But general,…”
“Enough! Return to your cohort at once.  We will march.”
And hence the proud eagle standard of the Ninth led the legionnaires out of the fort and headed north.  
For the last time.

I served the general well.
My in-born skill in tracking was unsurpassable. I could find the easiest way through rough terrains, the
sweetest water spots, the perfect site for setting up fortified camps.  Titus never relied on my reports alone.  
He always sent other scouts to check them but found that I was right every time.  His guards seemed to
relax a little and entrusted me with more challenging tasks.
I was ordered to hunt down any menacing native that might endanger the legion. This I did, mercilessly,
cutting down my own people with my long halberd, one of my weapons that had become feared by those
who had seen it in action.  A clean sweep could cut a horse in halves, or remove the head from a torso
without the victim even realizing he was dead until the head hit the ground.  
This pleased the general though. My selfless dedication to work was appreciated and I became his valued
pawn, an instrument that would lead him to Gorlagon.
The North country was cold, and wild beyond imagination.  The legionnaires were all tough men.  But I
smelled their fear It was in their eyes, in the uncertain glances at the thick woods, in the startled alarm when
a black bird rose in flight among the undergrowth, in the cries of distant wolves…
I listened, to the wolves.
And nodded at what they told me.

We were getting near the lair now.
Everyone could feel it.
The general was viewing me with suspicion again.  Something had alerted him, that my earlier service was
nothing but a coy to win his trust, and that I might lead him into a trap.  
I pretended not to know.

We reached the fork.  A decision had to be made which route to take. By a soldier’s instinct, the general
sensed an ambush ahead.
“Which road to take, Pict girl?” The general eyed me on his saddle, the black plume on his helmet fluttering
in the wind.
I knew which road was safe and which my father would spring surprise on this lonely force of several
thousand.
I lifted my halberd and pointed to the left one.
The general chuckled.
“So, this is the safe road? “He chuckled. “Let us find out if you are telling the truth.”
He turned to his second-in-command. “We will take right side one. And you, decurion, will ride with her
ahead.  If the road is safe, cut her throat!
He laughed when he saw my face contorted with rage.
I kicked at the side of my horse and trotted forward, flanked by the Decurion and one other officer who had
their gladii drawn from their sheaths.
We were soon surrounded by thick mist when we heard the thundering noises of fell trees blocking the
routes of advance and retreat on the narrow mountain pass.  I turned and smiled at my two supposed
executioners.  I had played the game the general devised and beat him on his suspicion.  The road I
pointed, on the left, was really a safe pass.  The general, by deciding that I would deceive him, had chosen
the trap, just as I had expected.
The two Romans did not even have a chance to decide what they wanted to do.  I kicked my horse into a
gallop and with a clean sweep, sent the two heads into the misty air!

The rest was pure slaughter.  
Unable to span out and form proper battle lines, the Romans could not bring their superior weapons and
training into play.  The huge fireballs made from ignited sraws rolling down the hillside broke their ranks.  By
then I was charging alongside with Aeron who shot her deadly arrows at any men standing.  I hacked my
way into the fray, slaughtering screaming Romans with my instrument of death.  In the distance, I saw
General Titus Flavius Virilus dragged down from his saddle.  His helmet with that black plume was rolling
down the side of the hill.  I searched for Quintus Dias, but he was no where to be seen.  There were dead
everywhere, and those who were not yet dead, would be put to the sword.  I wanted to find him and put an
end to this but neither he, nor his body, could be found.  I knew he was not among the dead.  I could not tell
if I was happy, or troubled.
I picked up the eagle standard of the ninth and raised it high in front of the cheering warriors.  We had won.  
And the Ninth was no more.


We should have known.
He would not give up.
In our jubilant mood of victory, we lowered our guards.
He, and a few men slipped into the camp and tried to free the prized captive, their general.
They failed but in the attempt, they killed my youngest brother.
We cremated his body and forced the general to have a duel with me.
He lost.
And his body was burnt together with the eagle he had served.
There was more to be done.
A blood oath was taken, that we would track them down and kill every one of them.
I, as the best tracker, would lead.
We went north.  Any other men would try to escape south, the shortest route to safety of their walls.  But not
him.  He would take the most un-thought of route.  And he would have succeeded, it if was not me who was
against him.
I took Aeron and a few other warriors, male and female, and gave chase.
We cut down three of them along the road, losing an equal number of us.  
We pressed on.
I knew there were several advantage over them: we knew the country better and we could find food and
water easily.
A starving group of men could not go far, or fast enough.
But he proved to be more resilient than I thought.
They survived despite the odds., turning south when they realized their plot did not work.
They tried to reach the abandoned fort
We almost caught them in the open but they ran like the devil was behind them.
Once they reached the fort, they pushed shut the gates and manned the ramparts.
Somehow they found the old arsenal and armed themselves with left over weapons of sorts.
Golarcon was with us now and he had tasted blood.
“Attack at once!”
I shook my head. We were nine against their four but four corned men could be dangerous.
“Have the Romans turned your blood meek?  Obey me!”
I bit my lower lip and urged my horse forward.
The fort was not that tall and the walls had crumbled a bit, leaving gaps that men and horses could slip
through.  
I readied my halberd so that any incoming missiles could be deflated.
But they did not shoot at me.
They waited for my horse to go pass and then I heard the sing of bows.
Two cries of anguish from behind.  I turned my head and saw two warriors, one male and one female, ate
dust as they tumbled from their mounts.
Aeron let fly an arrow and must have hit a mark as one man on the rampart reeled and shouted out in pain.
More arrows and another one of my warriors fell.
But we forced our way into the fort.
Quintus was waiting with a huge axe in his hands and a sword in his belt.
A Pict charged him with a warhammer but Quintus ducked in time and hacked the axe into the neck of the
charging horse.  The horse collapsed with the rider, who met his own end as the axe came down again,
clefting his head from crown to jaw.
I dismounted as I did not want my own horse to suffer the same fate.  I would fight him on ground, my
halberd a match with his axe.
We charged towards each other, eyes ablaze with fire.  We knew only one of us would leave here alive. The
metals clashed, echoes vibrating through the morning air.
Our weapons locked for a short instance before we both jumped back.  We began to make circles, detecting
any breach in the other’s defence.
From the corners of my eyes I could see Aeron putting her bow to play again and the men who had been hit
just before got another one in the chest.  His knees buckled and he was still alive. Aeron, dropping the bow
and pulling out her dagger, raced up the ladder to deliver the final blow, perhaps trying to cut the throat.  
She did not see the other man rushing behind her.  
I wanted to shout a warning but then remembered that I could not utter any sound.
Desperate to save my sister, I let go of my halberd, sending it straight towards the man and hit him in the
chest.  
Quintus tried to close in but I pulled out my two short swords in time and we fought.
The battle was not going as well as we expected.
The fourth men had just slain another of ours and now he was battling with Gorlacon who was wielding a
spear.  Had it been in his younger days, he would have despatched his foe with ease.  But age had eaten
his strength without his realizing it.  His blows became less and less threatening.  I could almost see the fear
in his eyes as he was cornered, regret in his eyes for not following my advice of caution.  The Roman ran
him through.  I screamed and broke off engagement with Quintus and catapulted myself towards the one
who had just killed my father.  His face betrayed surprise as he looked at his guts, spilling all over the
ground before him.  I had cut his belly open, top down.
I did not have time to enjoy my pleasure of victory though.  I heard Aeroin’s cry of despair on the rampart
and I turned to see that the wounded man, far from being dead, had press my sister against the defensive
wall, an arrow which he had pulled out of his wound in his hand.  Aeron’s white frock had been torn down,
one of her young breasts exposed.  She knew she was going to die and instead of struggling, she braced
herself and offered her naked tit for the man to ram the arrow in.  I saw her body stiffen as the missile ate its
way just under the nipple and then her body was tossed over the rampart and hit the outside ground with a
thud.  The wounded man slid down into a sitting position.  I did not know if he was dead or alive.
Now only Quintus and I remained in any state to fight.  I repositioned myself, and shook my head so that my
ash blonde hair was sent flowing in the wind behind me.
Quintus had thrown the axe aside.  Perhaps that was not his favourite weapon, perhaps he thought that was
too crude a thing to end my life with.  He was a centurion and a gladius should serve him well.  This, he
pulled out from his belt. As he walked towards me, he picked up a small round shield that had been left their
by one of the dead combatants.
We stared at teach other, the passionate embrace of that night raced through my mind: the strong muscles,
the touch of his skin, the smell of our sweat…
I charged.
It was more a dance of death than a duel.  So many times I was that close to slit his throat and yet the
opportunity slipped through my fingers.  He was good and I could see he approved of my fighting skills too.  
Had we been born in the same people, we might become inseparable partners for life.  But fate had decided
that only one of us would live!
So be it!
The attacks and parries continued.  I lost a sword and he lost his round shield.  Each strike now became the
utmost test of strength and agility.  I had won so many fights in my life, against women and men and never
lost.
Until today.
I did not know how he finally made his way behind me.  My sword arm, the left one, was twisted behind my
back and I could feel his strong grip on my wrist.  I could feel his hot breath upon the nape of my neck as he
was about to deliver the coup de grace.  Strangely, I felt no fear.  It was as if a young deer was about to fall
prey to a wolf, only after a chase worthy of it and its predator.  I moved my unarmed hand towards my chest
and pulled down the left side of leather corset that served as my armor.  I would love him to caress it, kiss it,
suck it, if only for one last time.  This, was not to be, I knew.  The only thing that would greet my exposed
breast would be his merciless blade.  I heaved and made ready for the pain, for the ecstasy.
He reeled me around so that our faces almost touched. I felt the tip of his gladius touching the base of my
breast where it would glide into my heart.
“Till next life…”I said in my throat.
He could not hear it of course.
But in his eyes, there was a look of admiration, of love as he made the thrust.
My body stiffened as the cold blade ate into my flesh, cleaving its way to go between my ribs and shatter my
heart.
I sank backwards onto the dusty ground as he released his grip on me and lay spread-eagle before him.
He knelt down beside me, brushed the few locks of hair from my face and then closed my eyes.
“Till next life.” He said.
That was the last thing I heard.
(End)
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Story Copyright Hitomi Satomi. Please do not reprint without permission of the author.
Story basis and images Copyright "Centurion", Magnolia Home Entertainment.
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Comment from: Othello
Date: October 2, 2011

Hitomi, there is no one quite like you in capturing the fiery emotions of battle, and
instilling your characters with a passionate sensuality that blurs all the boundaries of
love and death. I never saw the film that this is based on, but I have always been
enamored (as you know from my own historical writings) of tales of ancient Rome. Your
depiction of the struggle between the Romans and Picts is fascinating, filled with
bravery and tragedy. Your ability to layer a sharp-edged eroticism into lush settings like
this never ceases to amaze (and delight) me as a reader. I was very touched by the
ending.
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Comment from: Nastassja
Date: October 8, 2011

The ending of this got to me too...very spiritual and romantic. I never saw this movie, was
it a direct-to-video type of thing? You also have a very poetic quality to your writing,
Hitomi. Are you a poet too? It reminds me in a way of the 1930's writer Robert E. Howard,
who also wrote very violent stories, but with a poetic undertone (he was a poet too). I'm
definitely getting addicted already to your writing.
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Comment from: Satomi Hitomi
Date: October 14, 2011

Thanks, Natassja,
Yes, I write poems too, though mostly in Chinese, my mother tongue.
The film had been shown in theatre but I watched it on the plane and then later, the full
version on DVD (They cut out the part in which the young sister got her eye jammed in
by an arrow on the plane and that was why I differ from the original as I only watched
DVD after I finished writing).

Thanks for your kind comments.  I will try my best not to disappoint in my future writings.

Hitomi
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