Boudica’s Revenge – Sunday Photo Fiction

The warrior queen, Boudica. Photo by: Alastair Forbes

Boudica’s Revenge

Vance Bartram looked up at the statue of Boudica beside Westminster Bridge and thought something was different.

“This is an outrage!” shrieked Loughton Pinchot, chairman of the RRS (Roman Reenactment Society). “Look at this!” He held out his replica of a Roman helmet. Most of its comb had been burned away and a large dent marred the metal. The breastplate he wore, lovingly recreated in bronze, bore holes and gouges as though from sword blows. Pinchot glared at Police Chief Mabry. “I demand you arrest the hooligans who did this at once!”

“I fully intend to do so, sir,” said Mabry. “Unfortunately, there’s very little evidence to go on so far.”

“Lack of evidence?” howled Pinchot. He shook the battered helmet under Mabry’s nose. “What do you call this?”

The heavily built police chief was unfazed by the theatrics. “Yes, very good, but who perpetrated the crime? The tents housing the Roman costumes of your actors were surrounded by constables who saw and heard nothing. The security footage is curiously blank.”

“You must have something! The History of London celebration is ruined. Someone must pay!” He turned on Vince, who still stared up at the statue. “Bartram! You’re the historian of the event. Who do you think would violate the celebration?”

“Someone who hates Romans passionately, I’d reckon.”

“Go on,” said Mabry.

“Well. Boudica was an Iceni queen whose lands were stolen and her daughters raped by the Romans. She led a revolt and eventually sacked London while it was the Roman city, Londonium. Eventually, she was defeated by Gaius Suetonius Tranquillus at Watling Street. Anyone who knows her history knows her burning hatred for Romans.”

“Yes! In fact, Suetonius retreated from London allowing her to destroy it.” Pinchot pointed to the Roman garb he wore. His Tunca looked like a red skirt as it fluttered in the breeze beneath his armor. “I would play the part of Suetonius. “I would march the Romans past this statue of Boudica. We’d suddenly look up to see the Briton warrior queen and race away in terror!”

Bartram pointed at the Roman standard held aloft by the statue. “I see our Boudica now holds the standard of Legio IX Hispana as though she’s captured it.”

“Made with actual bronze, I might add,” grimaced Pinchot. “It’s a perfect replica. Hooligans placed it in the statue’s hand.”

“I just don’t remember the statue holding anything aloft like that. It’s different,” said Bartram.

“Are you saying the statue was vandalized also? Impossible!” said Mabry.

“Maybe.”

Pinchot set upon the police chief once again, shouting and blaming him for the whole debacle.

Ignoring the noise, Bartram watched the statue of Boudica once again. He thought he saw its features change, and even the head moved fractionally. Soon her fierce gaze set upon Pinchot, dressed as the Roman who ultimately defeated her. A malignant grimace formed on her face and the javelin in her hand lowered towards Pinchot.

“You’re the historian, Bartram,” said Pinchot. “What should my actors do now?”

Bartram winced as Boudica’s javelin aimed perfectly at Pinchot/Suetonius. “Well, as a historian I’d say…get the hell out of that costume!
______________________________
Author’s Notes:
Since I knew nothing about Boudica, I studied a lot before writing this.
Boudica: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boudica
History of London in Roman times: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_London#Roman_London_.2843-410_AD.29
Roman Standard: http://www.roman-empire.net/army/leg-standards.html
Legio IX Hispana: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Legio_IX_Hispana#Rebellion_in_Britain

Each week, Alastair Forbes offers up a first-born photo as a sacrifice to the Roman gods. From there, humble scribes such as myself, imagine stories of the old and new based upon the photos. This story is one of them. Look here for more stories based upon the photo of Boudica above: https://sundayphotofictioner.wordpress.com/2015/02/08/sunday-photo-fiction-february-8th-2015/

Advertisements

About EagleAye

I like looking at the serious subjects in the news and seeking the lighter side of the issue. I love satire and spoofs. I see the ridiculous side of things all the time, and my goal is to share that light-hearted view.
This entry was posted in Short Fiction and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

16 Responses to Boudica’s Revenge – Sunday Photo Fiction

  1. She’s still out for revenge! LOL! I wonder if he got the hell out of the costume before it was too late. Loved this!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Fun story and interesting history.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Lyn says:

    Let’s hear it for the girls 🙂 Great story, Eric. It seems she hasn’t forgiven the Romans even after all these years. It’s too bad she decided to kill herself before the Roman’s executed her. She’s actually mentioned in Dr Who. According to the 7th Doctor, “When some Romans later raped the Iceni women, Boudica’s response was swift and bloody. She ordered that the Roman’s be skinned alive and impaled on posts with their intestines…in their mouths.”

    Liked by 1 person

    • EagleAye says:

      Cool. Boudica was not a patient nor a forgiving woman, apparently. Not somebody you ever want to piss off. It’s a fascinating story. I’ve heard about “warrior queen” for ages but presumed it was “mostly” the stuff of fantasy. Here’s a real one and she’s awesome.

      Glad you enjoyed the story. Thanks for the visit and the extra history lesson from Dr. Who.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Indira says:

    You write so convincingly, I would like to think its true to the last line. Great story.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. That’s funny. I like that ending. Apparently, it’s pretty foolhardy to play Roman anywhere near Westminster Bridge. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • EagleAye says:

      Thank you! Yes, dressing as a Roman in that area is asking for a lot of trouble. Luckily they had a historian around to figure that out. Glad you got a laugh. Thanks, David!

      Like

  6. julespaige says:

    And just what is a statue to do waiting around like that for hundreds of years.
    But to take full advantage of the ‘situation’
    Nicely, nicely!

    Like

  7. Great story, Eric. I think it was good thinking to get out of that Roman outfit as soon as possible. Well done. 🙂 — Suzanne

    Liked by 1 person

Don't be shy. Say something!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s