You see a short, lank woman sit down in a chair beside you. You strike up a casual conversation over wine, and get to telling her your life story. You ask for hers in return, and she smiles to herself, and replies.
'It's dead.' I clearly remember my father telling me those were his first words he said about me. Maybe that is why I am under height, but continuing with the story...
'No, she flexes her hands. See?' my mother referred, exhausted.
They both smile. 'A beautiful baby girl. What shall we call her?'
Mensa remarks to herself, 'My name is a combination of my heritage. My grandmother on my mother's side was Merius, and my fathers was Krensa. So, they comprimised, and here I am today,' adding a chuckle to the comprimise part.
'When I was young, my father used to take us to the gladiator fights. We would watch the men hack eachother to death for the pleasure of the crowd, and all thought it fine. My parents always remarked my dexterity being so good because they 'were the first things I ever moved.'
So, I always took interest in the hand to hand combats in the arena. The fist-fights and dagger fights were appealing and slow, and I always enjoyed them when I knew no better.
She looks downward. 'At 14, my father died. My mother was saddened, but didn't let it scar the remaining 5 years of her life. When the war with Iridine against us Aestivan's was brought up, my mother always discouraged the thought. 'We are both fine nations, why kill
thousands of people to settle a power dispute?' I always agreed with her, and wanted to visit the other side of the war, ridicule or not.
Mensa pauses to take a sip of wine, sighs, and continues.
'At nineteen, my mother died. We both knew it was coming, and she prepared possessions a few weeks in advance, for the war drew nearer.'
So, the town paid their respects, and wished me well with a few possessions, and returned to their homes. I knew I had to reach Iridine before the battle came too close, so I paid a travelling merchant to give me a ride. He took me to Republic's city, Vespin, and went on from there on his usual route. The rest of the way, I hunted for food, living off snake and rat meat, and drinking river water.
She smiles to herself, 'At last, the city walls were visible. By the next day, I stepped into the city of Iridine. It was not perfect, but it was not a bad place to live. I lived in a shack for the first few months on the harbor, then ventured into the main city, and ended up in the Stone Toga inn.
She stands up, hands her cup to Constantine, and prepares to leave. You ask her, 'You came here, so what do you plan to do here?'
She looks over her shoulder at you, pausing.
'I plan to enjoy the gladiatorial arts more than my father. I hear a man named Ariston said he could show me how cestii are used...'
And with that, she strides out the white door, down the street, and dissapears from sight.

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