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Heresy:Anguis Britannicus

Chapter I


     Morgan woke up early.The mist hadnít dissipated yet.Slighly dizzy he went out to breath some fresh air,than he remembered,proffesor Septimius would come today.A quick smile flashed over his face,he liked Septimius, he wasnít the kind of man to make compromises,truly fanatic about his philosophy,he embraced the old ways of the greek thinking with a slight twist because he was an atheist.Heíd come to Brittannia from Mediolanum to avoid both christian and pagan persecutions.
     -Donít follow this religious nonsense,he used to say,you only have one life.Be self disciplined and focused on what you do and never let anyone break your beliefs.Septimius would also teach him ,beside philosophy ,the roman art of orathorial speaking
     Father Bernardinus,a respectable priest from the nearby church, on the other side was teaching him the holy scripture.His father insisted:
     - Christian faith is the one to follow these days , especially if you want a carrer in your beloved Rome,it can open  many doors,plus father Bernardinus is much cheaper than Septimius and he has a lot of relations all over the Roman empire ,from Carthage to Jerusalem and from Tomis to Rome.Gain his respect and trust and youíll go a long way.
       His father was the practical type,mother though was a whole different breed.She was still following the old druidic rituals,although she was very discreet about it.Morgan could  still remember from the time he was a child ,the enchantments she used to make and the lullaby songs she used to sing in a strange,ancient language.
        
       Finally Septimius arrived,he was a man past his fifties with carefully combed hair, a bold and very direct look and a very straight and dignified stature.Today though he seemed slighly sad.
        -This is going to be my last lesson and hopefully the most important one.I spoke with your father , in a few days youíll be on the road to Rome,youíll go with some merchants backed heavily by some mercenaries.Barbarians are not a joke.Anyway the way I see it youíre going to become a christian ,thatís your choice.What I want to teach you is the supremacy of the human spirit over religion ,so my lesson is actually a request,it doesnít matter what faith to have ,but please try to seek behind it that grain of truth that can maintain a manís dignity. Thatís all!!! I still have some friends in Rome,here are two letters that Iíd like to send to them.One is for Simmacus, a true monument of tradition, the last defender of the old Roman faith in the Senate.The other letter is for Plotin a philosopher , I think youíll like them both.Youíre almost twntyfive now, youíre a man .I also think that you need a latin name, youíll have the freedom to choose that yourself

       Morgan slept bad that night,heíd have a vision of a great gathering ,with all the people screaming with rage ďPelagius! Pelagius! ď while he was standing in front of them covered by a strange light,brighly white above him,and dark red beneath him as if it melted the earth.When he woke up, he had the answer.
       -From now on Iíll be known as Pelagius,he told his father.
       -Pelagius? That means ďThe great oneĒ.Arenít you a little bit too optimistic? But anyway itís just a name. Iíve prepared everything that you need for the road,when you reach Massillia please drop this letter to Severus, the textile merchant , heís a good friend of mine.Now go see your mother.
       His mother was waiting for him when Morgan came,She had a very strange smile.
       -Donít say anything, she said  ,this is the last time that Iíll see you on this world, but donít worry youíll become more than rich and powerful as your father wishes,youíll write your name in history. Iíll visit you often in your dreams.Magic is more powerful than you believe. I love you mu son.Farewell now!     
        Father Bernardinus entered then:
        -Come on already everyone is waiting for you,the horses are ready.Weíll first go to Glevum,ther are some holy men there who dedicated their to God,youíll like them,they have very strong  principles and live a life of ascetism.,one of them travelled a lot in his days and weíll need his advice.
        Together they went in the courtyard,five people or so were busy packing while another one was watching them very carefully while sharpening his sword.He was dressed almost completely in black and had a very strange look.
        -That is Zynos,the caravan leader,Benardinus whispered.He used to be one of the areani,heís a very dangerous man,but useful to have near in these days.Zynos,then he said woth a loud voice,let me present you young Morgan here,heíll travel with you to Massillia.
     -Iím not called Morgan anymore,from this point on my name is Pelagius.
     Zynos raised an eyebrow:
     -Pelagius? You definitevely think big , I would give a sword ,but Iím not sure that such a petty and small weapon would be suitable for you.Carl !! he yelled,bring this fine lad one of those battleaxes we bought from Londinium.
      A small boy showed up than barely dragging behind him, a huge iron battleaxe.
       -You must be kidding .Morgan whispered ,nobody can carry that,let alone fight with it.
       -Great men need great weapons,Zynos said and a quick smile flashed over his face

       The first twenty  miles were easy.The horses were fresh and everyone was joking and laughing. Than suddenly Zynos stopped.
        -Halt!!! he said. There are a few bands of  Carausiusí around here,weíll have to leave the main road,and continue through the forest than down the river Severn until we reach Glevum.

        That night they slept in the woods with no campfire allowed.Everyone freezed  especially Morgan , Bernardinus was trembling with excitement though
        -This is how the monks in Egypt live their life, imagine for one night weíll be just like them.
        Everyone gave him an agry look,except Zynos who began to laugh.
        -Youíre not the exactly the average peasant are you? There is a difference between those monks and my men though. Those monks live like that because God told them to, my men  sleep this way because I told them. Now quiet everyone!! I want to sleep.

        Finally the next day while going along Severn,Morgan said:
         -Look thereís a city!!!
         -You have a sharp eye my friend,answered Zynos, indeed thatís Glevum,now letís hurry up.
This is the first chapter from a novel i want to write about Pelagius, who became famous as a heretic in the early fourth century.

His life seems extremely interesting. Born in Britannia,he travelled than to Rome,than as visigoths sacked Rome,he took refuge in Carthage and then Jerusalem.

This is my first attempt at writing prose,so any advice or observation would be extremely appreciated.

The preview picture belongs to Albrecht Durer and the piece is called Descent of the Holy Spirit
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