by William (Grade 4/5)

Would you want to be a boy in the Roman Empire? Julius didn’t. He was farming his master’s field outside of Ariminum when he heard his master’s voice.

“Julius, come here.”

Julius was a thin, tall, dark haired boy and he feared his master. He began to walk to his master’s villa.  

“Julius, why isn’t my armour polished?”

“I-I-I ddd-don’t know, sir.”

“You are supposed to polish my armour.”

With that, his master grabbed his sword and whacked Julius’ shoulder with the flat of his sword.

“That’ll show you!”

Julius scurried out of the room. It was now dark out. Julius scurried to his hut. His parents had been sold into slavery and Julius had lived on his master’s farm from a very early age.

A tear rolled down his cheek. ‘I have to get out of here,’ he thought. But that was easier said than done. Hastati guards swarmed like cockroaches on the farm. With that, he blacked out and fell asleep.

In the morning, he got his flint and went to the outskirts of the farm. He had heard stories about slaves trying to escape and failing and being beaten by their masters. Because of this, he was afraid, but there was some inner valour in his heart.

He came up to a large stockade. He picked up his rock and began to bang it with his flint. Sparks started flying. At first there were only sparks, but then it turned into a blasting inferno. The stockade was on fire!  This was Julius’ chance! But as soon as he started running, he felt a sharp pain in his leg.

‘No, it can’t be,’ he thought. But when he looked down at his leg, he saw it. A javelin!

“Nooo… !” he said.

Those were his last words before he blacked out. When he finally came to, he was in his master’s villa.  

“Julius! You tried to escape and you must be punished!”

Just as his master said that, Julius ran out of the room. He was terrified. But he knew that he had to get out of there.

Then he remembered the stockade fire! He rushed to the wall. Now all that was left was charred coal.

‘Run!’ he said to himself.

He ran and ran deeper into the woods until he noticed a sharp pain in his arm.

“Oh my Jupiter!” he said. There was an arrow in his arm. He tried to pull out the arrow. It worked, but blood was gushing out. He got a leaf and covered the wound and the bleeding stopped. He got some more leaves and tied them together. He sat down and drifted off to sleep.

When he woke up, he heard the thunder of hooves. Julius sleepily opened his eyes. He saw some rough-looking men on horses. He instantly recognized the people. Celts! As the Celts were shouting some foreign babble, he saw a glimpse of red. The Roman legion!

First came the Hastati, the principles and Triarii and the equites on the flanks. Then, as suddenly as they came, the Celts unleashed a hail of arrows on the Romans. An ambush! The Romans, hurt by the arrow fire, charged at the Celts. The Celts, who were unscathed, charged too.  

Quickly, Julius found a dead Roman. He tried to put on the dirty armour. While he was doing this, he thought, ‘Maybe if I can fight and return with the army then I can run away to the countryside.’ He checked the dead soldier’s badge. ‘I am in the thirteenth battalion,’ he said to himself.

He joined his battalion. Luckily, the guy beside Julius was thick.

“Hey Brutus! I never knew you were short!”

Then Julie saw it. The general! He was charging right for him! Julius got his spear and crunched himself into a ball with his spear sticking outwards. After a lot of confusion and noises, he stood up. Everybody was around him.  

“Kid, you got Vercingetorix!”

“You’re the savior of Rome!” another said.

They all paraded him into Rome before the Emperor.

“Julius! You have made me proud! You have slain Vercingetorix! How would you like to live in the palace with me?”

“Yes, I would love to, sir!”

Julius couldn’t believe it! He was about to burst with joy when everybody cheered! Now Julius did want to be a boy in the Roman Empire.

The End