untry-side, each bearing his tale of slaughter. Crowds gathered at the gates, swarming about every newcomer, vociferous for his story, and then cursing and threatening the teller because it was what they knew it must be.
In the atrium of Titus Manlius Torquatus, on the brow of the Palatine, overlooking the New Way, was gathered a company of three: the aged master of the house, a type of the Roman of better days, and a worthy descendant of that Torquatus who had won the name; his son Caius, the youth who had been with Sergius in the Forum; and Lucius Sergius himself. All were silent and serious.
The elder Torquatus sat by a square fountain ornamented with bronze dolphins, that lay in the middle of the mosaic paving of the apartment. The walls were painted half yellow, half red, after the manner of Magna Grascia, while around them were ranged the statues of the Manlian nobles. The roof was supported in the Tuscan fashion by four beams crossing each other at right angles, and including between them