The Emperor rose, the white handkerchief in his hand. His eyes swept the arena, then tilted down to the two tiny figures immediately below him. The scrap of white silk fluttered from his hand towards the dirt of the ring.
“Paris, you must deliver the death blow,” Lucius insisted. “If not, we will both die.”
“Would you have killed me once you realised who I was?”
Lucius glanced away. “I robbed you of your life once. I could not do it a second time.” He turned his face up to Paris beseechingly: “Do it quickly. I will not feel it, coming from you. As though you were making love to me one last time.”