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Gladiators

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332 pages5 hours

Summary

After his paternal grandfather rescues infant Octaviate Bracia from one of Romes traitor purges, he spirits the child away to Judaea.

Upon maturity, Octaviate joins Caesars Forces. His vindictive ex-wife implicates Octaviate in treason. Her schemes are too perfect, in fact, to fully convince Caesars chief prosecutor of Octaviates guilteven though three legions with which he is associated have been decimated.

From Judaeas dusty highways and byways, an itinerate rabbi and his followers draw multitudes to their meetings and into their ranks. Soon, their massive popularity threatens the religious machine and the Roman Peace. Octaviates commander assigns men to follow this teacher and the crowds should the rabbi establish Messianic claims.

The downfall of Lucius Aelius Seianus, imperial regent, brings Caesar Tiberius out of hiding. Caesar is neither happy nor balanced. He decrees empire-wide purges for traitors.

The love of Octaviates second wife, a former slave and arena fighter, the imperial prosecutors desire for truth, and his commanding officers faith in his loyaltyall of these enable Octaviate to prove his innocence.

Under pressure from religious officials, Rome crucifies the rabbi for treason. While supervising the loathsome task, Octaviate sees Messianic prophecies fulfilled. Now he admits before the world that, truly, this man was the Son of God. His declaration brings Romes fury upon him.

While Rome festers with paranoia and lies, Octaviate wonders if anyonehis family includedcan escape so great a wrath.

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