Currently working my way through the possible torture of the many people involved in plots to kill Caligula.
In this entry the praetorian guard have already questioned and tortured the beautiful actress Quintilia, but she’s given them nothing. The next step has been to bring in the guy she’s sleeping with, Quintus Pomponius.
Pomponius knows something, but he’s not the main guy. No huge shock, I realise – he’s hardly got the makings of a criminal mastermind.
Still, I subjected him to a little light torture, mainly on the grounds it’s his fault that poor Quintilia is in such a state. He should never have involved her in this mess. I’d never use Caesonia in such a way. Or I hope I wouldn’t, at least.
Anyway, we ended up giving him a full pardon, at which point he kissed my feet in thanks. It was actually gross, by the way. I’m going to have to burn these sandals; the slobber of sycophants and traitors is notoriously impossible to remove. I’m also making sure Quintilia is given compensation money, hopefully enough that she can remove herself from Pomponius’s company as soon as possible. I do hope she isn’t in love with the man, he’s so not worth it.
The doctors say she may never act again, certainly not in the ‘beautiful heroine’ role. Her nose is practically on the other side of her face now. And yet, she seems to bear Cassius Chaera no ill will. Towards the end of her interrogation she even gave him a little smile, and I’m absolutely positive it wasn’t a triumphant one. It just seemed warm and kind. Reassuring, even. Surely she ought to be furious with him for destroying her livelihood with a few well-aimed blows?
There again, maybe she’s just biding her time. Her talent for acting has fooled me before.
To fill you in, Cassius Chaera was one of the guards who actually assassinated our hero not long after. Quintilia was supposed to have made a sign to indicate to him whilst she was being tortured that she wouldn’t give them away. That’s dedication to the cause.