Caesar was proving not entirely agreeable to what she needed, abroad at least, if she were to share rule of the sea-kingdoms with him from Rome. She had looked into the law-books at Rome, and shuddered; good Alexandrian matrons and daughters would find life at Rome onerous, with the dull weight of confinement to the domicile, and the tedious round of spinning and weaving. The lively market-women of Egypt were another tribe entirely, even and especially those of Greek descent, who had taken to Egyptian ways with stunning alacrity.
Of course, there was time. He was only in his mid-fifties, hale and hearty, and she could well imagine him peering out from that well-shaped bony helm to navigate the destinies of empire for another decade at least. He had on him none of the marks of the slow-wasting weariness that took the old, nor (it went without saying) any of the fat of the sybarite or the drunkard. Not only as a patron of hospitals was it useful to have had a physician’s training, but as a student of politics and an actor therein. An ally or opponent with the mark of death upon them was another thing entirely; one then had to look beyond that man or woman to the heirs.
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