Gaius is Dead
Gaius is dead.
The adopted son of great Augustus, the ruler of Rome, has died under suspicious circumstances in Limyra, Lycia, where he had been resting from the wounds he received in Armenia. His death will shake Rome to its core. Old Augustus has worked long and hard on his legacy, and to make sure his own blood takes the throne of Rome after him.
Gaius was the one he had placed his trust on, especially after Lucius, the young brother of Gaius died two years prior. Now the loss of Gaius is going to break the great man's heart and the hopes for the great future of the new Rome he has built for so many years, are in doubt.
When great men break their hearts, other men die.
It falls on Decimus Maximus Claudius, a Praetorian Centurion of ill repute, and his clever slave-girl Matullina to investigate the matter, and to find the guilty one to appease Augustus, before the news reach the great man. The murderer must be found, or people will start losing their heads, even those who are not guilty of anything. Rome and its delicate balance of power hang in balance.
And yet, Limyra is not a Roman city, and Lycia not a Roman province, and soon, the two find the ancient land hides many other secrets, far older, darker ones, than the murderer of Gaius. Navigating treacherous waters of unhappy marriages, the schemes of power-hungry merchants, the ancient dangers of killers old as time, and the plots of those, who hate Rome Augustus has built, the two will soon find themselves armed by little else than their wits.
Will Decimus and Matullina survive their investigation, and will they find the murderer. Indeed, will the answers they find bear the light of day?